With three games gone in the Premier League, things don’t look all that great for Liverpool. Jurgen Klopp’s men were expected to charge out of the gate, especially after their win on opening day but the Reds have faltered in their next two fixtures. The Reds were humbled by Burnley and then had a 1-1 draw against Tottenham at the Lane.
While Liverpool’s attack hasn’t clicked, their defence isn’t doing any better either. However, the crux of the issue seems to be a lack of steel in the midfield. The Reds play with a trio of Adam Lallana, Georginio, Wijnaldum and Jordan Henderson. The Englishman, Henderson, plays as the deepest midfielder and is given the task of providing cover to the defence and also break up the opposition’s play.
Henderson has been singled out by fans for not performing well in this role but Klopp was adamant that the midfielder will do well.
Speaking to the Liverpool Echo, the German had this to say about the English player:
“I see him every day in training so if I was doubting him then he would not be here.
“It’s quite easy. I like this player and he is very important for this club 100%. There is absolutely no doubt.”
Henderson though had his best season for Liverpool when he was given a free role ahead of Steven Gerrard in that amazing 2013-14 season. The change in position and role has not been fruitful for the 26-year-old. Klopp might expect Henderson to be his best option but the forgotten Brazilian, Lucas would be good in this role as well.
The 29-year-old is known for his defensive duties and was the better tackler last season as he won 3.9 tackles per 90 minutes compared to Henderson’s 1.81. The Brazilian was also better at intercepting passes and notched up 2.39 interceptions per 90 minutes with the Liverpool captain coming in with 1.53.
However, it seems that Klopp has decided to use Lucas sparingly. The midfielder was used as a centre-back last season for a few games and that could be his role this season too. Klopp wants players who are mobile and can cover a lot of distance, something that Henderson is known for.
The formation that Klopp applies at Liverpool needs a player who can run for the entire 90 minutes. For the moment it does seem that Henderson is the right man for the job but the Englishman has to pick up his game. There are other midfielders coming up the ranks at the Merseyside club and could easily take up the spot held by the Liverpool captain.