Jurgen Klopp says Joe Gomez brought back a ‘nice little asset’ to Liverpool on Thursday. The Englishman continued his pre-season return.
Joe Gomez is back. He returned last week as a substitute against Hertha BSC and started Liverpool’s second game against Bologna on Thursday.
It’s fantastic to see. Gomez picked up a serious knee injury with England last November and hasn’t played competitive football since.
His surgery seems to have been quite intense, in fact, judging by the scar on his knee. But now things, finally, appear to be on track.
And we even got to see a first against Bologna. Jurgen Klopp gave us all a glimpse of the future, partnering Gomez with Ibrahima Konate.
We expect those two to become a force at the back, leading the Reds into their next era. At least, that’s the plan.
But that wasn’t all we got to see. Klopp made sure to point out after the game that Liverpool got a ‘nice little asset’ back with the return of Gomez.
Klopp on Gomez
“Having the centre-halves back, playing football, you can see Joey with new long balls from left to right to left, a nice little asset,” Klopp told Liverpoolfc.com. “It’s good, we can switch the game quicker maybe.
“Even after a long time, not with all of the guys who came late, we have to get used to each other quickly and then we have to make sure we are ready for the season.”
It’s a facet of Liverpool that went under-appreciated last season, in truth. As good as Nat Phillips, Rhys Williams and Ozan Kabak were defensively, they didn’t replace everything Virgil van Dijk and Gomez bring.
Those swept passes onto the flank are a massive element of Liverpool at their best. They largely rely on Van Dijk, Gomez and Joel Matip to provide them, operating as a sort of deep playmaker.
Liverpool can rely on their defenders to quickly start a counter or take advantage of an overload. And with so much threat on the Reds’ wings, teams struggle to counter that passing.
It’s back now, though. And hopefully, another piece of the successful Liverpool machine is in place.