Liverpool Have Found The Answer To Their Centre Back Injury Crisis - ''He’s Better Than Lovren And Matip Put Together!''
Liverpool recovered from back-to-back defeats to title rivals Manchester City and Wolves (FA Cup) after Jurgen Klopp’s men claimed the spoils against Brighton down on the south coast.
The margin of victory may have been slender, Mo Salah’s penalty was all that separated the sides, however league leaders Liverpool dominated the match with 70% of possession, while the hosts failed to register a single shot on target.
Prior to the game itself, Brighton were undoubtedly hoping that they could cause Liverpool’s backline problems given the club’s well-publicized injury crisis, with the likes of Joe Gomez, Joel Matip, and Dejan Lovren out on the sidelines.
However, unfortunately for Chris Hughton’s men they just so happened to come up against Fabinho who was the star of Liverpool’s defence after coming in alongside skipper Virgil van Dijk, with the Brazilian helping his side register their 13th league clean sheet of the season.
The midfielder, who played in the unfamiliar position in the defeat to Wolves, repaid the faith shown to him by Klopp in what was a confident and intelligent performance, much to the delight of Liverpool fans who watched their side storm seven points clear at the summit of the table.
On the basis of today’s dominant display, Liverpool needn’t bother faffing around looking for emergency centre-back cover in the transfer window as they already have more than adequate cover in summer signing Fabinho.
Of course, there will be tougher challenges to come, but while the aforementioned trio rest up and recuperate, the £40m man can fill the void.
Meanwhile, Klopp was quick to heap praise on the 25-year-old - quotes via Liverpool Echo.
“Fabinho is a brilliant player. To have a good footballer in that position when you have the ball is great. He has a defensive brain and can play in a lot of positions.”
A multitude of Liverpool supporters were also of the same opinion...
Fabinho just casually making himself our third choice CB behind VVD & Gomez. (@adamrowecomedy)
That's the beauty of having a defence you can rely on to keep a clean sheet. Van Dijk and Fabinho imperious at the back. (@joel_archie)
Fabinho for one or two games at centre back always the much better option than signing someone we never rated enough to get in the first place. Knows the system and a big part of his role in midfield is awareness of the CBs behind him. Also highly intelligent wherever he plays. (@Dan23_92)
A special mention for Fabinho this afternoon. The man has been under scrutiny since his move to England in the summer, but today he was solid in an unfamiliar position in what could have been a difficult away fixture. Brilliant. (@FalseFirmino)
the sensible option rather than lashing out money on whoever is available. Best thing about Klopp is he waits for players he identifies as necessary. (@neillovat)
Fabinho is a better CB than Lovern and Matip put together what a man (@KIoppology)