Liverpool left-back Alberto Moreno has been heavily criticised for consistent defensive mishaps lately costing Jurgen Klopp’s side vital points. Although the whole of the Reds’ back line have been under scrutiny of late, it seems the Spaniard is at the focal point of their defensive woes and therefore, receiving the most abuse for it.
The full-back joined the Anfield team in the summer of 2014 from Spanish outfit Sevilla in a deal worth £12 million to cover the vacant role of injured Jon Flanagan for the season ahead. Last season proved to be a nervy one for Moreno but signs of improvements beckoned throughout the course of the campaign. This season, though, has seen his form diminish since becoming a regular in Jurgen Klopp’s regime, angering the Anfield faithful.
Under Brendan Rodgers, the 23-year-old was played as a wing-back – a position of which Moreno thrived in. Playing three centre-halves relieved the Spaniard of his defensive duties, allowing him to bomb forward, bolstering Liverpool’s attack and giving him more freedom on the left flank. However, the current Reds boss has gone for a traditional back four of which has seen Moreno at left-back - a decision that has proved costly.
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Playing in defence hasn’t stopped Moreno from posing a threat up front and giving extra support in the final third this season. This works well, until the Reds, more often than not, are caught on the break and have a gaping hole on the left side of defence, allowing the opposition to use the full width of the pitch which could subsequently lead to a goal.
With fellow full-back Flanagan returning to the side, maybe it’s time for a change in personnel regarding the left back position if the Reds want to stop conceding avoidable goals.
There’s no disputing Moreno possesses qualities to suit the Liverpool side; however, defending isn’t one of them. Therefore, maybe it would be more beneficial to push the Spaniard further up the pitch. That way, Liverpool’s number 18 can act as a winger or attacking midfielder, leaving defensive duties to Flanagan who, unlike Moreno, is known for his clinical displays at the back.
The Reds’ 2-0 defeat to Leicester last week saw Moreno spend most of the game in the opposing half producing a couple of shots of which one tested ‘keeper Kasper Schmeichel at the near post.
He then tried to replicate his attacking ability in Liverpool’s 2-2 draw with Sunderland at the weekend, linking up with the likes of Roberto Firmino and James Milner; however still continued to lack defensive qualities.
It’s clear to see left-back doesn’t suit the Spaniard and Klopp should test Moreno’s ability further up the pitch, preferably on the wing. The Liverpool supporters are eager to see Flanagan make a return to league action and with the 23-year-old out of form and costing Liverpool vital points, it’s definitely time to see an imminent change regarding Moreno’s position.