Jurgen Klopp says Curtis Jones did so well in a new position vs Burnley
Liverpool were forced to shift things around a little this afternoon, as Trent Alexander-Arnold went off injured at half-time.
Without a natural option, Jurgen Klopp turned to Curtis Jones. It was a slightly surprising move from the manager, although Jones has played there once before for Liverpool.
In the end, it turned out well, the 23-year-old putting in a solid display against the tricky Wilson Odobert. And in quotes from BBC Sport immediately after the game, Klopp praised the way Jones adapted to the role.
“It was super difficult today,” said the German. “We lost so many players two weeks ago and now, then Trent Alexander-Arnold has to go off at half-time. We have to see what’s going on there.
“Curtis Jones had to go right-back and had never played there his entire life! He did so well. We scored these wonderful goals. Harvey Elliott came on and had a real impact. Top performances. We did really well it was just a difficult one.”
Klopp praises Curtis display
Looking at Jones, he doesn’t really have any of the attributes we’ve become used to seeing in a Klopp full-back.
Languid and sometimes a little ponderous in possession, Curtis is a far cry from the all-action Bradley or Andy Robertson, for example.
He also isn’t a deep-lying playmaker in the mould of Alexander-Arnold. Jones isn’t an exceptionally strong tackler or quick enough to get up and down the line.
In short, it looked a bit of strange one from Jurgen – just as it did when the academy graduate captained the side from right-back against Leicester City in the Carabao Cup in September.
A more natural fit might have been Wataru Endo perhaps, who has seemingly filled in there at his previous clubs.
Another option may have been to chuck Kostas Tsimikas on and split he and Robertson between left and right.
Ultimately though, Klopp of course knew what he was doing. Disciplined enough to play the role without doing anything silly, Jones contributed to locking things up for Liverpool in the second-half.
We’ll have to wait and see just how long Alexander-Arnold is now missing for. But with Bradley possibly due back this week and Gomez likely to have recovered, the Reds should be well covered for next Saturday at Brentford.
If the pair are still not ready to play, then Klopp now knows he can stick Curtis in and he’ll be just fine.