I know there are probably a million and one people out there who disagree with me at the moment, but I don’t think Jurgen Klopp has done too much wrong this season.
There’s obviously the slightly bizarre goalkeeper situation discussed last week, then there’s the lack of a proper Coutinho replacement during January, but other than that and a few dodgy recent results I think Klopp has got it nigh on perfect.
The master motivator continues to evidence his ability to galvanize his squad, and Liverpool’s recent jump to 3rd in the Premier League demonstrates exactly that.
But then there’s one issue that I don’t see many people talking about often; an issue that I’ve been wondering about for a while, and that’s at right back.
With Nathaniel Clyne out for approximately forever, the options have been either centre back, Joe Gomez, or previously unproven, though genuine right back, Mr Trent Alexander-Arnold.
Gomez has performed admirably this season, especially since he’s been out of position, but particularly in those tricky games against packed defences (such as Swansea), the reds have been screaming for the dribbling, crossing, and ingenuity that Trent possesses.
— Anfield HQ (@AnfieldHQ) February 9, 2018
Against Tottenham, Trent Alexander-Arnold was superb, playing his best game yet in a Liverpool shirt. His balance between defence and attack was excellent, delivering a number of sumptuous crosses whilst keeping both Ben Davies and Dele Alli quiet; no mean feat.
He had more touches than any other Liverpool player in the game and in doing so looked entirely calm and collected on the ball. While the young full back has shown errors in defensive positioning on past showings, this performance did wonders for those of us wondering how quickly he could learn from them.
What’s more, Alexander-Arnold is merely 19 years old and a bonafide home-grown scouser and we all know how for some reason, watching a Liverpool player from around a mile away from Melwood no less, just makes us feel that little bit more bonded with the club.
Whilst hundreds of millions of pounds flood the premier league from far east Sheikhs and East Asian sponsorship deals, our very own local lad removes the need to dip into the transfer market, and could be genuinely brilliant.
And this point makes it even better that he’s so highly rated by 2 other bona fide home-grown scousers, Steven Gerrard and Jamie Carragher.
Stevie stated this week: “I worked with Trent when he was a kid before he progressed into the first team and it’s no shock or surprise to me that he’s finding his consistency.
“I thought he was excellent at the weekend; for a kid so young to actually see and then to execute the passes that he’s playing in the final third, that shows his confidence.”
Stevie knows a player when he sees one, and also spoke in his autobiography long before Trent’s debut, predicting his rise to the top, and claiming he has all the attributes that you need to do so. At this stage, I’m inclined to completely agree.
Carra added last weekend: “Trent will be a future England full-back, he has been outstanding.”
Again I’m inclined to believe a Scouse defensive hero, because Jamie’s right. Kyle Walker has the spot firmly in his grasp at the current time, and deservedly so, but at 27, the national team will need a new man to step up to the plate in a few years, and Liverpool may just have one waiting in the wings.
A 19 year old who’s making us all forget about a man with over 90 appearances for Liverpool and 14 England Caps is understandably making some of us feel a bit excited.
If he continues to play like he did on Sunday, first I’ll be questioning Klopp about his selection. Soon after, I’ll be wondering just how far Trent Alexander-Arnold can go as Liverpool and England’s long-term future right back.