Gary Neville: 'Uncomfortable' Alexander-Arnold NOT GOOD ENOUGH to play midfield

Former Manchester United right back Gary Neville has hit out at Liverpool’s Trent Alexander-Arnold, suggesting the England international is “not good enough” to play in midfield. 

Alexander-Arnold, 25, was named as Gareth Southgate’s No.8 for the European Championship ahead of specialist midfielders like Conor Gallagher, Adam Wharton and Kobbie Mainoo. 

Former tournament mainstays Jordan Henderson and Kalvin Phillips, meanwhile, were left out altogether with Trent entrusted to command the centre of the pitch alongside Declan Rice. 

Reviews were mixed following Trent’s tournament debut in midfield against Serbia on Sunday, with World Cup winner Emmanuel Petit suggesting he doesn’t know what he’s doing

The midfield debate has become the key England Euro 2024 talking point and now ITV pundit Gary Neville has weighed in. 

He credited Jurgen Klopp with getting the best out of Alexander-Arnold by moving him into the midfield from his usual right back station and declared that Southgate must do something similar. 

The homegrown hero doesn’t have the quality to receive the ball with his back to the play, according to Neville, and he also stated that had he been good enough to play as a midfield player in his career then he would have done so by now. 

“What Jurgen Klopp's done at Liverpool is find a way to get him into midfield from right back,” Neville said on ITV.

“Look there’s no doubt if you’re good enough to play in midfield all the time, you would play in midfield.

“The reason you were right back is because basically you’ve been shoved back there from being either a wide player or a midfield player at some point in your life and you’ve not been good enough. 

Liverpool’s Trent Alexander-Arnold for England.

NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE, ENGLAND - JUNE 3: Trent Alexander-Arnold of England celebrates after scoring goal 2-0 during the International Friendly, Länderspiel, Nationalmannschaft match between England and Bosnia & Herzegovina at St James Park on June 3, 2024 in Newcastle upon Tyne, England. Photo by Will Palmer/SPP Will Palmer/SPP PUBLICATIONxNOTxINxBRAxMEX Copyright: xWillxPalmer/SPPx spp-en-WiPa-RC4_WPA_ENGxBOS_03jun2024_SP-9095

“I was the same as the 14-year-old or 15-year-old, I was a midfield player, we all were and then we got pushed back.

“So where you saw Trent struggle a couple of times there was when it was tight and with his back to play. To receive the ball with back to play is the hardest thing in football in midfield. 

“We don't do it well as full-backs, not even Trent, who's unbelievable on the ball. He's uncomfortable in that position.”

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