Does Gary Neville STILL believe Jurgen Klopp would swap Liverpool's midfield for Man Utd's?

Manchester United suffered their HEAVIEST Premier League defeat of the season on Monday night, going down 4-0 at Selhurst Park against Crystal Palace. 

There’s no doubt the last few weeks have been disappointing from a Liverpool point of view but the Reds’ struggles pale in comparison when placed next to United’s. 

Although Liverpool will be disappointed to have slipped out of contention for the Premier League, the FA Cup and Europa League, they have at least managed to secure a trophy this season in the shape of the Carabao Cup and qualified for the Champions League last week. 

Many Liverpool fans would have taken that outcome at the start of the campaign, even if the chase for a treble proved ultimately frustrating. 

Over at Old Trafford, meanwhile, they have lost 13 games in a Premier League season for the first time ever and are about to finish the season on a negative goal difference for the first time in 34 years. 

It’s been a disaster for Erik ten Hag and his players, with it widely expected that the Dutchman gets his marching orders at the end of the season. 

 

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But Gary Neville was one high-profile pundit who was optimistic about United’s prospects at the start of the season, even suggesting that Jurgen Klopp would swap his Liverpool midfield for Man Utd’s back in August. 

Liverpool have undertaken a massive midfield overhaul this season, with Fabinho, James Milner, Alex-Oxlade Chamberlain, Naby Keita, Arthur Melo and Jordan Henderson all leaving the club and new signings like Wataru Endo, Dominik Szoboszlai, Ryan Gravenberch and Alexis Mac Allister all coming in. 

United, on the other hand, signed Casemiro for £60 million from Real Madrid two summers ago - along with Christian Eriksen on a free - and added Mason Mount for an initial £55m last year. They also brought in Sofyan Amrabat on loan from Fiorentina while Donny van de Beek still remains on the books. 

When assessing United’s manifold problems, midfield has been an area identified time and again this season. 

On Monday night, although playing at centre back as cover, Casemiro had perhaps his worst outing in a United shirt, with Liverpool legend Jamie Carragher suggesting his time at the top was over after the game. 

“I always remember something when I retired myself, there was a saying I always remember as a footballer: ‘Leave the football before the football leaves you’," he said on Sky Sports.

“The football has left him at this top level. He needs to call it a day at this level of football and move.”

Mount meanwhile has barely managed 500 Premier League minutes this season, making only his fifth start in the Palace defeat. The England man already looks like a busted flush. 

Mac Allister leaves Man United midfielders in the shade

Liverpool’s Mac Allister on the other hand has looked like the signing of the season and was brought in for only £35m from Brighton - an undisputed transfer hit. 

Endo, too, has impressed in places and his performances have been well worth the £16m Liverpool paid to Stuttgart for him. 

While Szoboszlai’s form has tailed off following injury, he no doubt looks a solid long-term prospect for Liverpool, carrying a goal threat and creativity in abundance. 

 Gravenberch looks like a work in progress, but at 21 he’s got plenty of time to improve. 

However, speaking to the Overlap before the campaign commenced, the Sky Sports pundit was unequivocal about which teams had better midfielders than Liverpool. 

While Arsenal have impressed at the top of the table and boast midfield stars like Martin Odegaard and Declan Rice, there is no doubt that this is one Gary Neville assessment which went very wrong. 

“When you look at the actual players, let’s say United as an example, Fernandes, Mount, Casemiro, Eriksen. I think Jurgen Klopp would swap his midfield now for United’s,” the former United right back said in August. “The midfield that Arsenal have got with Rice, Partey, Odegaard [he would swap as well]. 

“He’s [Klopp] having to over-coach them and over-perform. Before when they were signing these 30, 40 million pound players they ended up being absolutely outstanding and world-class players. 

“These lads that he’s got now, we know they’re good players but they’re not the same Liverpool as they were four, five years ago. He does need now, unfortunately, to go and sort of get one from the top shelf.”

They say hindsight is 20/20, eh Gary?

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