How Trent Alexander-Arnold compares to Premier League's greatest right-backs

"He's got the material to be the very best right-back of all time," said Gary Neville of Trent Alexander-Arnold after the Liverpool defender's man of the match performance against Manchester City at the weekend.

The former Manchester United defender, who knows a thing or two about the qualities needed to be a great right-back, waxed lyrical of Liverpool's No. 66 after the game against Man City.

Not only did Alexander-Arnold score a delightful equaliser for the Reds, as well as frequently stepping into midfield to help Liverpool build attacks, he coped with the pace and skill of Jeremy Doku incredibly well.

Despite fears prior to the game at the Etihad about Doku's ability to torment Alexander-Arnold with his direct running down Liverpool's right-hand side, the England international stood up to the test.

It was yet another commanding performance from the Liverpool right-back, a player who has helped revolutionise the position under Jurgen Klopp's guidance.

Despite the agenda against Alexander-Arnold, there is no denying just how talented the 25-year-old is - no matter how hard some may try.

Is he perfect? No.

Is he brilliant? Undoubtedly.

So, where does Alexander-Arnold rank among the best right-backs in Premier League history?


APPEARANCES

One thing that Alexander-Arnold has over the greatest right-backs to grace the Premier League is time.

Despite being just 25, the defender has already amassed 288 appearances for the Reds since making his debut in 2016. Of those, 209 have come in the Premier League.

Given just how young Alexander-Arnold was when he broke into the Liverpool team, he's destined to rack up plenty more appearances in a red shirt.

Looking at some of the best right-backs in Premier League history, Alexander-Arnold is still some way off the likes of Cesar Azpiliceuta (696), Gary Neville (602) and Kyle Walker (581) in terms of appearances.

However, what Alexander-Arnold has achieved in a fraction of the time is incredibly impressive.

TROPHIES

One thing that is a constant source of controversy when analysing the Premier League greats is their respective trophy hauls. For some it means everything, for others it counts for very little.

While Alexander-Arnold's silverware cabinet pales in comparison to the three aforementioned right-backs, he still has a sparkling trophy collection for a player of his age.

Alexander-Arnold has five major trophies to his name - the Premier League, Champions League, FA Cup, Carabao Cup and FIFA Club World Cup.

In comparison, Neville has 23 major trophies - over four times as many as Alexander-Arnold - while Walker (13) and Azpilicueta (10) also boast more.

However, while Neville's record at 25-years-old was far superior to Alexander-Arnold's, Walker had just one trophy (the Championship) to his name and Azpilicueta had just three (one Europa League and two French League Cups).

Come the end of his career, Alexander-Arnold's trophy haul may be more decisive in conversations about his ranking in Premier League history, but the right-back is on track to win plenty of silverware over the next decade or so.

GOALS & ASSISTS

After Alexander-Arnold's performance against Man City, Neville also stated: "His performances on the ball are absolutely out of this world. The difference between me and him is night and day – I can't even relate to what he's doing on the pitch."

Where Alexander-Arnold really stands out is his quite frankly insane attacking output from right-back. Even before he moved into a more advanced central position for the Reds towards the end of last season, his major strength has always been his offensive quality down the right flank.

His ability to support Mohamed Salah in the attacking third is superb, while his passing range remains, as Neville says, "out of this world".

In his 288 appearances in a red shirt, Alexander-Arnold has amassed a combined 92 goals and assists (17G / 75A), approximately one goal contribution every three games.

By contrast, Neville, who is widely considered the best right-back in Premier League history, has a combined 56 (7G / 49A) in over twice as many appearances. While the former Manchester United defender was part of a much more successful side over a longer period, he has rightfully admitted that he could not do what Alexander-Arnold does in the opposition half.

Walker (12G / 50A) and Azpilicueta (19G / 66A) also fall short of Alexander-Arnold's attacking numbers despite their greater experience.

In Premier League history, only teammate Andy Robertson (57) and Ashley Young (71) have more assists as a defender than Alexander-Arnold (55). Considering the latter played much of his career on the wing, it's only really Robertson who can boast more assists from defence in the competition.

VERDICT

It's far too early to consider Alexander-Arnold the greatest right-back in Premier League history, largely down to the fact that he has so much of his career still to come.

However, there is little denying that the Liverpool defender has transformed what it means to be a full-back in the modern game alongside Robertson, and would comfortably find himself in the top five in the Premier League era.

If he carries on developing at the rate he is currently, he will almost certainly finish his career as the best we have seen in the Premier League from the right-side of defence.

The sky is the limit for Liverpool's No. 66.

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