Liverpool have used 18 centre-back partnerships this season. Here we list them all – and what we think of them.
18 centre-back partnerships – how are Liverpool even managing that? Injuries had decimated plan after plan, leaving Jurgen Klopp with a constant need to rotate.
So here’s a stat from today. The longest continuous streak for a partnership this season is 2.5 games. That’s all.
It’s a miracle that Klopp is keeping things running so we thought we’d list all 18 along with the number of times they’ve played together.
Fabinho and Joel Matip – 7
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Rhys Williams and Fabinho – 7
Jordan Henderson and Fabinho – 4
Joe Gomez and Virgil van Dijk – 4
Nat Phillips and Henderson – 3
Ozan Kabak and Henderson – 3
Fabinho and Gomez – 3
Williams and Gomez – 3
Fabinho and Van Dijk – 3
Phillips and Fabinho – 2
Matip and Gomez – 2
Williams and Van Dijk – 2
Phillips and Gomez – 1
Matip and Williams – 1
Williams and Billy Koumetio – 1
Matip and Henderson – 1
Phillips and Kabak – 1
Matip and Van Dijk – 1
What RTK has to say
There are three partnerships on this list that we wanted to see this season. Three.
Gomez and Van Dijk, Matip and Van Dijk, and Gomez and Matip. That really is it – we hoped to see them together and nothing more.
Fabinho has proven himself to be a solid centre-back but even then, we’d much prefer if he’d have played the entire season in midfield. He’s supposed to be a last resort at the back.
Instead, Liverpool have used an extra 15 this season. That’s 42 times that Klopp has used a sub-par partnership.
Perhaps nothing sums things up more than the fact that Matip and Van Dijk partnered each other once. We’ve seen Williams and Fabinho seven times but Matip and Van Dijk once.
The mad thing, though, is that we want to see more partnerships. We want to see how Ben Davies can do with Kabak, how he can do with Fabinho.
After the derby defeat, we hope to see one of those soon, too. Potentially in Liverpool’s next fixture.
We’ll call it 18 and counting, then.