Wednesday night saw Liverpool draw 1-1 with Napoli. The Reds were held at Anfield by an Italian side that seemed more intent on frustrating the hosts than grabbing a goal themselves. But grab a goal they did, Dries Mertens fouled Virgil van Dijk and slotted past Alisson Becker with our number four in a heap in the centre circle. Despite the frustrating result, the game proved that Trent Alexander-Arnold is the best full back in the world.
Jürgen Klopp started with Joe Gomez at right back. Exactly what the reasoning behind this decision was is not completely clear, the gaffer told BT Sport that is was due to how ‘dynamic’ Gomez had been in recent performances.
Whilst the England defender looked solid defensively, making good recoveries and appearing calm in possession, the centre half doesn’t have anywhere near the same attacking threat as our first choice right back.
The fact that Liverpool looked so toothless going forward without Trent Alexander-Arnold is evidence that he is the best full back in the world.
How many teams do you watch struggling to grab a goal and you think: “they really need to bring on a defender here if they want to score”?
It’s absolutely bonkers how important Trent has become to our attacking exploits, that is not a complaint by the way, rather high praise of the young man. His delivery and creativity from full back has made him critical to the way we play in possession.
When we did win a corner or grab half a chance, it was because we had moved the ball from left to right a couple of times to open up a gap. We had to go through the midfield to do this. When Trent is there he just pings it across himself, this added speed opens up more gaps and with more regularity, as Peter Crouch told Match of the Day – it doesn’t give defenders time to react.
If there is one positive to take from the Napoli draw it is that Trent Alexander-Arnold is the best full back in the world, without question.