Liverpool’s silverware credentials were certainly tested to the extreme in the weeks building up to the current international break.
The Anfield side faced up to a brutal string of fixtures that included ties against Chelsea (twice) Manchester City, Napoli, Tottenham and French giants Paris Saint Germain all within the space of three weeks.
The Reds emerged unscathed and joint top in the league, but Jurgen Klopp will still be smarting from losses to Chelsea and Napoli in the Carabao Cup and Champions League.
With their normally prolific front three misfiring, Liverpool’s lack of creativity in midfield has really been exposed.
James Milner, Jordan Henderson and Giorginio Wijnaldum are all very capable players, but lack the kind of creative spark possessed by the likes of Philippe Coutinho or Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain.
Now, the charismatic German will have more bad news to digest after it emerged that Naby Keita was forced off injured while on duty for national side, Guinea.
However, according to a report in the Mirror, Klopp had been planning on making a big change to his midfield to address the creativity issue even before the international injury list was confirmed.
Between now and the mid-November break, Liverpool face the leagues bottom two, and it’s leakiest defence.
With two games against apparent Champions League Group C whipping boys Red Star Belgrade sandwiched in amongst that run, the Keita blow could well be softened.
With that in mind, Klopp feels more comfortable promoting new signing Xherdan Shaqiri to fill the role of his third midfielder with the hope that the Swiss star could help to reignite Liverpool’s attacking flair.
Shaqiri will be desperate to prove himself after a slow start to life at Liverpool and will be raring to go when Klopp gives him his chance.
Whatever the extent of Keita’s injury may prove to be, it seems that Klopp had seen the issue in his midfield and put plans in place to change it regardless of what happened in the internationals.
If the Reds can get that front three firing again, then we could be in for some big score-lines in the coming weeks.
Whether Shaqiri is the key to unlocking the terrifying potential Liverpool possess, remains to be seen.News Now - Sport News