Liverpool teenager Curtis Jones could have a future on the left-wing. He’s a potential solution to one of the club’s problems.
Liverpool reportedly want a player who can cover the left-wing this summer. Now, they’re hoping the same player can also play left-back – but that’s only from the perspective of a signing.
Instead, Liverpool could use Jones to cover Sadio Mane in the future. The teenager has regularly played there for the Under 23s and played well – Transfermarkt have his record as played six, scored five, assisted two when playing from the left.
So here are three reasons why moving Jones to the left on occasion could benefit everyone at senior level.
Jones is very much a developing player. He looks as though he’s got a very bright future as an attacking midfielder but he needs experience to develop.
One problem, then, is that midfield is a very crowded position. There’s Fabinho, Jordan Henderson, James Milner, Naby Keita, and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain gunning for positions. All are talented, all are slightly different, and all will want to play.
Daunting for a teenager – even if he does offer something different himself.
But using him on the left, too, offers Jones extra experience and more opportunities. That should help him develop faster and possibly even better.
Like we say, Jones offers something different from the middle. He could do the same from the left, however. Whereas Mane is a direct player who likes to use pace to run past defenders, Jones is far more likely to cut inside.
Mane attacks down the line when he can, Jones moves in front of the defenders. That’s a difference in strategy that Liverpool can take advantage of. In games against packed defences, for instance, Jones would offer different ideas to Mane.
Now, we’re not for a second saying those ideas would be better. Jones is clearly not as good as Mane (yet). But as an option to change plans, the Scouser could prove key.
We saw against Everton in the FA Cup how Jones can cut in from the left and shoot. That kind of confidence and ability could definitely change games, particularly from the bench.
No money spent
You can’t avoid the fact that Jones would be a free solution. In the current economic climate, it just makes complete sense to consider in-house options before spending money.
That’s something Jurgen Klopp spoke about recently and we think Jones offers a chance to do it here. He could expand the squad, add versatility, and for no extra cost.
And giving Jones a future from the left could help Liverpool find that backup left-back. They’d no longer need to search for such a specific player – perhaps saving them money there, too.
For no cost, it seems that Jones could prove vitally beneficial to Liverpool right now and in even more ways than we thought.