Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp comes to the rescue of Trent Alexander-Arnold over Neville’s comments
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has leapt to the defence of Trent Alexander-Arnold amid the comments made by Gary Neville in which the pundit claimed that Trent’s issue with defending might lead to Gareth Southgate not trusting the player for the knockout stages of the FIFA World Cup.
“It’s a really tough one with Alexander-Arnold.
We’re talking about knockout football. Whether England win or lose in a World Cup is going to be down to moments. A mistake – concentration. In this moment in time, I can’t see how Gareth can go into a knockout game in a World Cup playing Trent Alexander-Arnold.”
Klopp has leapt to his player’s defence and believes the comments made are unnecessary considering the number of finals that Trent has been a part of and won and therefore does have the experience needed to perform at the highest level.
“I heard Gary Neville said something (about Trent). But he’s now 24 and won quite a few finals, important games where you have to defend against world class players. He was always there, defending well. I don’t know why we have this discussion.”
Trent has made big strides in his career since making his debut for the first team and is a big part of the way Klopp wants his team to create and attack.
Liverpool have been one of the most dominant sides in Europe over the past few years. Trent’s ability to create from the back definitely changed the way people perceived the role of fullbacks in the modern game.
Trent has already won six major trophies with his club, completing the full set by the age of 24. Having played in all the major finals and come out on top, the Englishman has certainly proven his credentials as a top-level footballer.
It is understandable that there are question marks raised over the players’ ability to defend having been part of a leaky defence since the start of the season.
However, there is no denying his ability to play from the back and how he could offer a different dimension to England’s attack, with just a few days to go before the FIFA World Cup.
Football has evolved in different ways. Attacking midfielders and even strikers do a fair bit of defending now while full-backs can be attack-minded and not defence-oriented… The debate around Trent is tiring.
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Neville was an eyesore going forward but that doesn’t mean he was not a good full-back. People can rarely have the best of both worlds. There are some compromises made.