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Alexander-Arnold: The gaffer put me on free-kick duty

It is fair to say that Trent Alexander-Arnold has had a pretty impressive last few weeks for his club and country.

 

After scoring with a low rasping strike for England against the USA during the international break, the 20-year-old opened his league account this season against Watford at Vicarage Road on Saturday afternoon.

After Mo Salah had broken the deadlock of a tightly contested affair in the 67th minute, the right-back stepped up to take a free kick eight minutes later after Roberto Firmino was fouled by Watford defender Adrian Mariappa.

Without any hesitation, Alexander-Arnold curled in a peach of a ball over the wall and into the right corner which left Watford goalkeeper Ben Foster rooted to his spot.

 

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It was only Alexander Arnold's second goal in the league with his first coming against Swansea on Boxing Day.

Roberto Firmino finished the scoring in the 89th minute which came seven  minutes after captain Jordan Henderson was sent off for two bookable offences.

Speaking to the official site after the 3-0 triumph, Alexander Arnold explained that manager Jurgen Klopp gave him the green light to be on free kick duty for the clash.

"Before the game, me, Hendo, Millie, everyone was joking about who would take it.

" I think Hendo wants one so he stepped up with the ball in his hand. Then he passed it to me because the gaffer said before the game that me and Shaq would be on them.

“So that’s why when you look back at it, me and Hendo had a little moment together when we celebrated as a bit of a joke.

"It’s always good to be able to score and contribute to a win; we were happy to get the win first and foremost.”

For a team which many observers have said are yet to fire on all cylinders, the Reds are still managing to break club records on what seems to be a weekly basis.

By not conceding against the Hornets, Liverpool have let in the least number of goals (five) to this stage of a league campaign.

This is also their best start to a season in the Premier League era.

In normal circumstances that will be good enough to build a handy lead atop the Premier League, but the unflinching Man City remain an almighty hurdle to clear.

That being said, you can only control your own side of things and Alexander-Arnold says playing as a unit is instrumental to the current success of the side.

“We are not going to concede that many goals – and the forwards can score the goals. 

"As long as we keep that belief then I’m sure we will keep getting these types of results.

A trip to Hertfordshire has not been an easy assignment for the Reds during the reign of the German with one win, one draw and one loss  resulting from the three meetings before yesterday.

 

The 3-3 draw on the first day of last season remains fresh in the memory for its symbolism of past defensive frailties.

It was for that reason why Alexander-Arnold was thrilled with the victory.

"It was a tough game. It’s always tough when we come here.

"In the first half we found it quite tough but we managed to keep them out and we knew if we kept going we would get a good chance at goal ourselves. 

"That came in the second half and the later it went on, the better it was for us to break them down.”

After a little dip in form, it is a true testament of Alexander-Arnold's character to see him respond in this fashion.

 

Long may it continue.

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