Pundit Glenn Hoddle has taken aim at Liverpool right-back Trent Alexander-Arnold for his performance against Fulham at Craven Cottage last weekend.
The Scouser was caught out of position prior to Fulham's first goal of the afternoon. Aleksandar Mitrovic climbed over Alexander-Arnold and headed the ball into the back of the net.
Hoddle believes that the 23-year-old needs to improve defensively.
“Trent’s not even aware that it’s Mitrovic, he has to jump early and block him off,” he told MatchDay Extra on Premier League Productions (06/08/22 at 8:10pm).
“He knows that Mitrovic is better in the air, but I don’t think he opened his body up and had a look.
“When you are a smaller fullback, and you jump early, then you put the player off, so Mitrovic comes above you, then he has to go through you.
“It’s a tough one and he has to learn that as a defender. I think that’s where Trent has to become a better player as a defender.”
The Premier League fixture ended in a 2-2 draw.
Anfield Watch Verdict
Hoddle makes a fair point. If Alexander-Arnold wants to take his game to another level, then he needs to improve defensively.
But, we do feel a bit for the youngster. Alexander-Arnold was a midfielder growing up. He only became a full-back when he broke into Liverpool's first-team around 2016-17.
Defending does not come natural to him. Also, because Alexander-Arnold is known as being an average defender, his mistakes are magnified by those who watch football.
Hopefully the Scouser can continue improving his game. He is superb going forward from out wide. We are confident over time that Alexander-Arnold will take his game to another level over time.