Ben Davies gets his last chance to make an impact at Liverpool when the Reds face Newcastle United today. The defender has become a forgotten man.
Will Ben Davies play against Newcastle United? Almost certainly not. Which makes you wonder why he arrived in the first place.
Liverpool struck a £1.6m deal for Davies to bring him in from Preston North End on deadline day. We imagined he’d partner Ozan Kabak and relegate Nat Phillips to the bench.
Instead, we literally haven’t seen him play. It’s coming up on three months since Davies arrived and Jurgen Klopp hasn’t put him in once.
Not from the start, not from the bench – nothing. And here we are on April 24th and it’s surely Davies’ last chance to get a game.
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Davies vs Newcastle?
Klopp confirmed yesterday that Phillips remains injured and won’t play today. Our instinct is that Fabinho will once again play in defence, much as he did against Leeds United.
But that would mean sacrificing the midfield. We’ve seen how badly Liverpool drop off without a holding midfielder there, after all.
It’s one thing to have Fabinho at the back when Jordan Henderson can cover that role. Instead, Klopp would be reverting to a plan that didn’t work.
And he’d be picking it over giving Davies a game at the back. We’ve seen Klopp make that choice before, of course, but this time it’s more notable than ever.
Davies is, undoubtedly, as ready as he’ll ever be. He’s been at the club for months and trained consistently with the first team.
And to be fair, he hasn’t really had too many chances over the last few months given Phillips and Kabak have been fit.
Now, though, is a chance to give him a shot and it’ll likely be the very last one. There’s no suggestion that Phillips is out long-term and he’ll likely be back before the next game.
That game is against Manchester United, though, meaning Davies almost certainly won’t play no matter what happens. After that is a game on May 8th against Southampton, for which Phillips will be back.
This game against 15th-place Newcastle, then, is Davies only real shot at a Liverpool appearance. If Klopp doesn’t give him a game, we can’t imagine we’ll see him at all.
Perhaps he gets a token showing on the final day if Liverpool have nothing to play for. But that would certainly be the most he can hope for.
At this point, we don’t expect to ever see Davies play for Liverpool. If it’s going to happen, though, it’s got to be today.