It’s not been the best of seasons for Liverpool collectively, and it’s also been a poor 2022/23 campaign for one or two individuals.
Not too long ago, the Reds’ style of play was being lauded as were the players and manager that were executing it, but how quickly things change in football.
With only a handful of games now left until the end of the season, the Reds have little prospect of getting into the Champions League and only a reasonable chance of making the Europa League if results go their way.
It’s entirely possible that some players have become complacent and taken their eye off the ball, because how else do you explain that a team that were top of European football a few seasons back and who had won their first English top-flight title in over three decades are now stuck in eighth place and desperate for points.
One player that hasn’t looked himself for some while now is right-back Trent Alexander-Arnold, and perhaps that’s why Jurgen Klopp appeared to have moved him a little further forward against Arsenal.
Journalist, Dean Jones told Give Me Sport:
“I’m told they (Liverpool) are looking more for competition for Alexander-Arnold than a direct replacement. That makes sense at this stage.
“It would be difficult for him to take if they were to go and spend £50m on a right-back instead of somewhere between £20m and £30m.
“It’s a tough moment for them, but the only way to get Alexander-Arnold to step it up a gear is if he has that level of competition.”
He also noted in a separate Give Me Sport report that:
“Alexander-Arnold probably looks at other players like Reece James and the roles they’re allowed to occupy.
“Part of him must feel he would thrive much more in a role like that.
“He got away with it when Liverpool beat everybody, and they were always on top of the game and always had the ball.”
If Trent is up to the challenge of having competition for places, then it really shouldn’t be too much of a problem for the player to realign his focus onto the things that matter – or face the consequences.