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Are Liverpool strong enough at left back?


One of the main areas that Liverpool struggled in last season was at left-back. Alberto Moreno failed to convince and James Milner replaced him in week two of the campaign.

 

Milner of course, is a midfielder by trade, but the 31-year-old former England international performed admirably at left-back during the 2016-17 campaign. In 36 Premier League appearances for Liverpool last season, the former Leeds United, Aston Villa and Manchester City star scored seven goals and provided three assists.
 
Yet it would have been unwise of Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp to deploy Milner once again at left-back this season. The Reds needed to address the situation and they did that during the summer transfer window. The Premier League outfit secured the services of Andrew Robertson from Hull City for £8 million in the summer. Robertson is 23 years of age and was one of the best players for Hull last season despite the Tigers getting relegated to the Championship.

 


 

Robertson is also a regular at left-back for the Scotland national football team, having earned 16 caps for his country since making his debut in 2014. The 23-year-old may have failed to make an impact at Celtic in his teenage years, but he has progressed steadily since breaking into the first team at Queen's Park in 2012. Robertson is not a world-class left-back at the moment, but working under a manager like Klopp, the former Dundee United star can only develop and improve in the coming years.
 
It is clear that Robertson is going to be the first-choice left-back at Liverpool this season, although given that Moreno is still at Anfield, the 25-year-old Spain international would provide him with competition and push him hard. Since Milner can still fill in at left-back, manager Klopp essentially has three players competing for that position during the 2017-18 campaign. 
 
Given the start that Liverpool have made this season, the Anfield faithful must be optimistic about a launching a challenge for the Premier League title this season. The Reds have picked up seven points from three league games so far, which included a 4-0 hammering of Arsenal at Anfield. According to latest Premier League odds, the Merseyside outfit are 11/1 to win the league title. Manchester City, Manchester United and Chelsea are ahead of Liverpool in the pecking order according to bookmakers, but back in 2015-16, not many gave Leicester City any chance to win the Premier League title; and we all know what happened.
 
Liverpool still need to improve defensively, as conceding three goals in three Premier League games is not a good sign. Moreover, with Champions League football to contend with, Klopp has to manage and rotate his squad properly, and make sure that all the players are fresh and fit. While finishing in the top four of the Premier League for the second season in a row will be a success for the Reds, the fans should be optimistic about Klopp’s team launching a challenge for the league title.


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