Many a question has been asked about Liverpool’s defensive style and shape this season, particularly in comparison to last season.
Speaking on Monday Night Football, Gary Neville said that he “asked Joe Gomez and Trent Alexander-Arnold on the pitch after the Norwich game, the first question I asked them was ‘it looks like you’re basically pushing up a lot more, or you’re holding your line a lot higher.’ They said they weren’t, they said they hadn’t been working on anything different in training, but there’s three or four examples now. The Community Shield, the Norwich game, this [Southampton] game, Chelsea the same. Four games now, the evidence is there – something has changed, I don’t know what it is.”
The fact that Neville can’t quite put his finger on what it is that’s changed is interesting enough. Have things actually changed or is it just some rust from the summer that will disappear as things get going.
One thing that may be an issue is the lack of time that the Reds have had to dedicate to training. 4 games in 2 weeks is double what most other teams have had to contend with, so with a bit of time on the training ground between Southampton and Arsenal, it’ll be interesting to see how the Reds play defensively on Saturday. They have one of the quickest and most dangerous front lines in the Premier League, so it’ll be a good test. High defensive line? We might see a VERY high scoring game!