Former Liverpool ace hails “pressing monster” and hints he could replace big name in Klopp’s XI

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Former Liverpool defender Stephen Warnock has spoken about the issue Jurgen Klopp might have in his attack at the moment.

Diogo Jota was in superb form last night as he started in place of Roberto Firmino and helped the Reds to an emphatic 5-0 victory over Atalanta in the Champions League.

Liverpool fans may well be tempted to think Jota is now the superior option to Firmino in Klopp’s starting XI, though it’s a far from simple question.

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Ex-Red Paul Konchesky recently told CaughtOffside that he could see Jota threatening Firmino’s place due to the Brazilian’s worrying lack of goals, but it’s widely accepted that his all-round play makes up for that lack of finishing touch.

Warnock, however, seems to think Jota can offer all the same work rate that Firmino does, describing him as a “pressing monster” and also praising his other qualities after he hit a stunning hat-trick against Atalanta.

The former left-back has suggested it would now be difficult for Klopp to leave the Portugal international out against Manchester City at the weekend.

“It changes the style of play. You see the pace Jota has. Jota brings more directness to it, while Firmino is more clever. Fans have been critical of him slowing attacks down too much,” Warnock is quoted by BBC Sport.

“They improve when Jota comes into the team at the moment. He has been impressive; he has been called a pressing monster.

“It shows his confidence. He has seen this as an opportunity of a lifetime. He believes he can take Liverpool to the next level and he has the trust of the players around him as well. Firmino will play at the weekend but it gives the option and a strong option.

“Jota is hot at the moment. It is very, very hard to leave him out against Manchester City. It looks inevitable that will be his forward three but you just never know with Jurgen Klopp.”

Klopp is quoted in the same BBC Sport piece as hitting out at questions over Firmino vs Jota, so it seems clear he doesn’t necessarily buy into the fact that it has to be a straight choice between the two.

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