Jurgen Klopp believes Liverpool defender Joe Gomez is a ‘world-class’ player – despite zero Premier League starts this season. The English centre-back struggles with injuries.
Jurgen Klopp talked about Liverpool’s centre-back options on Wednesday and specifically, Ibrahima Konate. The Reds’ boss clearly likes what he’s got and sees the Frenchman as a very talented player, even if there’s room to grow.
“He played games pretty early for us and I think we all agree he is an exceptional talent,” said Klopp, per Liverpoolfc.com. “Physically outstanding, good footballer as well.
“When you are that skilled, that quick, that strong, it’s pretty normal – especially when you are young – that your concentration level drops from time to time.”
But Konate isn’t the only centre-back that Klopp’s high on. He sees his other three options at Liverpool – Virgil van Dijk, Joel Matip and Joe Gomez – as ‘world-class’.
“We have with Virgil, Joe and Joel three more, from my point of view, world-class centre-halves,” he said.
Gomez is the one that stands out there. We’ve barely seen him this season (he hasn’t started a Premier League game) and there’s now a sense that he’s fourth-choice.
So is Gomez actually a world-class player?
Jurgen Klopp feels Gomez is world-class for Liverpool
As we see it, yes – he is. Gomez is a sensational defender at his best, capable of delivering everything you want in the modern game. He’s quick, strong, comfortable on the ball and intelligent enough to play either a pressing or covering role.
On top of it all, we’ve got to remember that Gomez was a regular starting centre-back as Liverpool ran away to the title. That run was built on their defence and the 24-year-old was a huge part of that.
But then came the same problem there always is with Gomez – injuries. He started last season well but was out for the campaign by early November.
That’s really the only reason Gomez isn’t regarded as one of the Premier League’s best defenders. Every time he gets going and establishes himself, there’s an injury that takes him out of the conversation. It’s largely why we haven’t seen him much this season, for one.
Hopefully, Gomez can overcome his problems before long. There’s an elite partnership waiting with Konate, after all – Liverpool just need to get him on the pitch.