For Takumi Minamino, there really is a case for genuine concern. The Japan international has clearly lost Jurgen Klopp’s trust – and supporters have reacted on Twitter.
Minamino, 26, only recently opened his Premier League account with the Reds, yet four matches on from that 7-0 victory at Crystal Palace, he hasn’t featured since.
With the weight of his inaugural goal in England’s top-flight lifted, it really felt like a moment where his Liverpool career would finally look to accelerate.
Unfortunately, this has been anything but the case for Minamino. Liverpool have scored just one goal since that pre-Christmas hammering at Selhurst Park.
And Minamino, meanwhile, hasn’t played a single minute.
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The former RB Salzburg’s fitness hasn’t been an issue either. He has been an unused substitute in all four of Liverpool’s previous four league matches, after all.
Still, to think Minamino has been overlooked in all those fixtures – none of which Liverpool have won – is slightly baffling.
Yes, Minamino didn’t cover himself in glory during the 4-1 win at Villa in the FA Cup, he wasn’t the only Liverpool player to disappoint that particular night.
Perhaps what is most strange about Klopp’s reluctance to utilise Minamino in recent weeks, is the timing. His most recent display was arguably his best, after all.
With that said, what more does the 26-time Japan international have to do to warrant further opportunities from his manager?
Liverpool’s recent poor form doesn’t help matters either. Roberto Firmino, in particular, has struggled in recent weeks. This immediately creates an opening to get Minamino in the team.
Still, however, Klopp fails to use it which suggests he isn’t totally convinced the £7.25 million [BBC] signing can make an all-important difference to the team.
Luckily, there are two important fixtures in quick succession for Minamino to stake a much-needed game.
Of course, he could start in either of the next two matches against Burnley or Manchester United. Rotation will be welcomed by Klopp, after all.
Reaction to Minamino
And as a result, a number of supporters have taken to Twitter in light of Klopp’s recent reluctance to utilise Minamino in recent weeks.
Here are a selection of responses from Kopites…