Friday 19 January 2018

John Aldridge picks his first and second Liverpool XIs - and some big names miss out on the top team

Kevin Palmer

Kevin Palmer

Liverpool goal-scoring great John Aldridge has picked a first and second XI for Reds boss Jurgen Klopp and suggested his old club now have enough firepower to challenge for the Premier League title.

While Aldridge fears Liverpool’s defensive frailties may undermine their challenge for the game’s top honours, he suggests they have more than enough goal power despite failing to sign a proven striker in the last transfer window.

"I have been saying all summer that Liverpool needed a 25-goal a season player to give them the cutting edge they need to challenge for trophies, but maybe they have enough goal power already," states Aldridge.

"You can see Sadio Mane, Roberto Firmino and Mohamed Salah all getting into double figures for goals this season and Daniel Sturridge will do the same if he can stay fit for long enough.

"Adam Lallana and Philippe Coutinho will score their share of goals and if you think a side winning the Premier League title need to score 80-90 goals, then you can see that Liverpool should get that total without the need to spend any more.

"The caution I would throw into this otherwise rosy picture is that everyone was saying the same things about Liverpool a year ago and they ended up collapsing in disastrous fashion amid a miserable run of results last January."

Aldridge also gave his view on Liverpool’s deadline day signing Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, as he suggested the £35m signing from Arsenal will not get into Klopp’s first choice line-up.

"Oxlade-Chamberlain is a good addition to the squad,” stated Aldridge.

"He is a young man clearly motivated by the chance to work under Jurgen Klopp and it seems he was also a Liverpool - and Steven Gerrard - fan as a kid.

"Klopp has shown that he improves players working under him and I’m sure Oxlade-Chamberlain heard that when he met up with Liverpool players in the England squad.

"His career has been stuck in neutral at Arsenal and that is the story for so many players at that club in the last few years.

"We don’t really know what Oxlade-Chamberlain’s best position is, as he has been used at wing-back, in wide roles and attacking roles in recent years at Arsenal.

"He says he wants to play in a central attacking position and maybe Klopp sees him as the kind of dynamic little player who can play the Firmino role at times.

"What he adds is strength to the squad and his ability to play in a variety of positions is useful, even if I don’t see him as a first choice for any role in the team right now."

Here is Aldridge’s first and second choice Liverpool line-ups:



Alexander-Arnold, Matip, Lovren, Robertson

Wijnaldum, Henderson, Can

Mane, Firmino, Salah




Clyne, Gomez, Klavan, Moreno

Milner, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Lallana

Coutinho, Sturridge, Solanke

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