'The real Luis Diaz is back' - and he could be the perfect Mo Salah replacement

Liverpool's electrifying 2-0 FA Cup victory over Arsenal on Sunday didn't just mark progress to the fourth round for the Reds, but for former Reds vice-captain Jamie Carragher, it also signalled the return to form of Colombian winger Luis Diaz.

In the gripping showdown at the Emirates, Diaz played a pivotal role in both of Liverpool's goals. First, he created chaos in Arsenal's defence with an attempted header from Trent Alexander-Arnold's delivery, leading to an own goal by Jakub Kiwior; then, he sealed the win in stoppage time with a stunning finish to round off a swift counter-attacking move.

Carragher took to social media immediately after the game, posting on X: "Huge result, but what could be pivotal for @LFC it looks like the real Luis Diaz is back in these last two games."

Diaz won seven duels (the most of any player wearing purple) against Mikel Arteta's side and completed all three dribbles that he attempted.

The Colombian also had two shots on target, with one leading to his goal and the other drawing an excellent save from Aaron Ramsdale.

Back at the right time

Having grappled with injury setbacks and personal challenges, including the kidnapping of his father, Diaz's resurgence comes at just the right time for Liverpool.

With the absence of the talismanic Mohamed Salah, who's away for the African Cup of Nations, there's a void that needs filling on the right-hand side of Liverpool's attack.

Diaz started the game on the left, with Harvey Elliott filling in for the Egyptian on the opposite flank, but Jurgen Klopp switched it up after the break, dropping Elliott into the middle and putting the Colombian directly up against Kiwior at left-back.

This coincided with the Reds' brightest spell of the game in an attacking sense and eventually led to two key goal involvements for Diaz.

Whether he continues to be used in that position remains to be seen, but he certainly is a closer match for Salah's profile than Elliott is.

Share This Article