Former Liverpool goalkeeper David James has advised Jurgen Klopp to give Trent Alexander-Arnold a rest after his poor recent form.
The Reds right-back was particularly unconvincing in the team’s 1-0 defeat to Southampton last night, and James has now made the big call that he could do with a spell out of the team.
This would have been unthinkable just a few months ago, with Alexander-Arnold proving himself to be one of Liverpool’s most important players for the last few years.
Despite still being only 22 years of age, the England international has made over 150 appearances for the Liverpool first-team, playing a starring role in their recent Champions League and Premier League triumphs.
James, however, now wonders if it could be a good time to give Alexander-Arnold a break due to playing so much at a young age without much of a break.
“He’s not a bad player but at the same time he hasn’t had any respite. From the moment he started playing for Liverpool, yes he had the injury earlier on in the season but young players more so than old players, they’re going to have off form,” James told Stadium Astro.
“Unfortunately for Trent at the moment he’s going through that bit of off form.
“Maybe the injury has taken him into a different space. I don’t think he’s fully recovered from that be it mentally or even in his normal life habit.
“He’s a young player who is obviously going to have a bad run of form, what you don’t want to do is have a bad run of form which results in losses.
“Today [Monday] was a resulting loss. Jurgen Klopp is very honest in his appraisal and assessment of games, he stopped short of saying Trent should have kicked the ball away but Trent was the only player who could have kicked the ball away.
“So he brings him off, which was a surprise substitution in some people’s eyes.
“For Trent, as a young player, we’ve seen this with Jordan Pickford at Everton, there is an argument that you could just take him out of the firing line for a little while.
“Be it a week or two, the FA Cup is coming up maybe that’s a good opportunity. Let him settle back down again and get back to being one of these great players.
“Trent might need a little break.”
He added: “Trent didn’t offer anything today. The crossing opportunities weren’t good enough. Obviously the defending… we’re talking about one game and everyone is entitled to a bad game but… Trent’s performance’s of late when you collect them together haven’t been great.
“So therefore Jurgen, do you drop him or rest him? The word drop sounds almost somehow final. I think it’s giving someone a breather.
“I think he needs a rest definitely.”
We’re not sure if LFC fans would agree with James’ analysis, as there’s not really anyone else in the squad who can offer what he does from that right-hand side.
Then again, if an escape from the limelight can help him recover and get back to his best quicker, it could be worth the risk from Klopp.