Jamie Carragher has a huge concern ahead of Liverpool’s clash with Manchester City on Saturday lunchtime.
The Premier League’s top two face off at the Etihad with just a single point separating the sides ahead of kick off.
Jurgen Klopp’s side have been boosted by the return of four players to training ahead of the game but despite the positive injury news Carragher is concerned by the prospect of the Sky Blues targeting Trent Alexander-Arnold who’s likely to start at right back for Liverpool.
“Where Klopp and his coaching staff have a match-defining tactical puzzle against a side of City’s class is maintaining the right balance between Trent’s attacking and defensive duties. My worry is even against weaker sides this has not been right,” Carragher wrote in The Telegraph (via The Boot Room).
“Liverpool’s last Premier League away game was against Luton Town when they were fortunate to escape with a draw. Luton’s best player that day was Chiedozie Ogbene, who was under orders from the first whistle to attack the space down Liverpool’s left.
“This remains a theme – an easy, go-to strategy for opposing managers who identify a weakness to exploit, especially when counter-attacking.
“When Ibrahima Konate plays at centre-back, Klopp has someone with the pace to cover Alexander-Arnold’s midfield positioning, but it remains an imperfect solution. Liverpool’s away form so far is poor, in stark contrast to their 100 per cent Anfield record.
“Guardiola will be zoning in on this. It is no coincidence that Grealish enjoyed one of his best games in a Manchester City shirt against Liverpool in April, relishing the space and time he was afforded on the left as he got the better of Alexander-Arnold in one-to-one duels.”
Opponents do often target our No. 66 due to his apparent defensive weaknesses.
The Academy graduate has been deployed in an inverted full-back role ever since the back end of last season which sees him step into midfield when Liverpool are in possession.
This allows the England international to further showcase his exceptional passing ability but also leaves our defence somewhat stretched when we’re counterattacked.
It would be no surprise to see Guardiola target this area of the pitch due to the fact plenty of other sides have tasted success down the left flank but let’s hope Alexander-Arnold can prove a few people wrong tomorrow.
He receives a lot more criticism than he deserves in our opinion but we’re confident he can help the Reds to a huge three points.