Dave Davis discusses 5 talking points from Liverpool and Arsenal’s 7 goal thriller at the Emirates.
Liverpool beat Arsenal 4-3 yesterday at the Emirates in yet another emotional roller coaster. Jürgen Klopp lined his team up in an attacking 4-3-3 formation which saw the Gunners overwhelmed as Phillipe Coutinho, Adam Lallana and Sadio Mane scored 3 goals in a second half explosion.
Aside from the fact we all nearly passed out during our 4-3 victory against Arsenal, the first day has already thrown up a game of the season contender. We looked so dangerous in the second half, but there are some key issues that need yo be addressed if we’re gonna enjoy more away days like that.
Coutinho is a magician
For all the new signings that have come in, the little magician still remains our main man. You could have put the Harlem globetrotters in that wall and it wouldn’t have helped Peter Cech stop that free kick. He was instrumental in a flick over the top for the second and it was a fantastic run to finish Clyne’s cross for the third. If it’s to be a successful season for the Reds, it will need Coutinho to show his powers.
Milner should be the first choice left-back
That statement says it all really. No-one would have blamed Klopp if he’d have hooked Alberto Moreno after 30 minutes such was the Spaniard’s performance. Moreno gave away a penalty with a rash tackle and compounded it with being caught out of position for Arsenal’s first. Everyone wants a new left-back to come in, but we’d rather see Milner there if we don’t get one.
Ragnar Klavan is a solid defender
When Joel Matip was announced, many expected him to be competing with Sakho for a spot alongside Klopp’s first choice Lovren. The Estonian may have forced a slight re-think as his no-nonsense style impressed on his Premier League debut. Klavan won important headers, made blocks and look composed. He wasn’t exposed by Arsenal’s pace either, so Matip and Sakho maybe a bit more worried.
Mane will be huge for Liverpool this year
Firmino, Coutinho and Lallana. Clever players on the ball, who like the ball into their feet. Liverpool lacked real pace in attack last season and have instantly solved it with the purchase of Mane. The Senegalese attacker looked a threat throughout and rounded off his performance with a wonder goal. The 24 year old gives our attack another dimension and you feel will be crucial this year.
Conceding from set pieces, again.
It’s an annoyance for everyone, but when Clyne gave away that free kick at 4-2, you were worried. The personnel has changed constantly but the problem doesn’t – Liverpool concede from set pieces. Klavan looked like he’d make a difference but there’s that worry that without a major change in personnel, it could continue to be our Achilles heel. A difficult one to solve for Klopp.