Liverpool’s former Spanish attacker Luis Garcia has given some thoughts on the current side, following a very difficult January in which we won one out of nine matches.
Our previously lethal attack has been blunt due to the absence of Sadio Mane, but it’s the defence Garcia has chosen to analyse – claiming the current bunch are nowhere near our legendary former duo of Jamie Carragher and Sami Hyypia.
“I miss that leadership. Carragher and Hyypia were very important and players, like Lovren and Klavan are, but they don’t have the character that those two had,” he told the Independent. “They are new and to become an important player in a team like Liverpool takes time, but we are missing those type of players.
“Carragher was a shouter on the pitch and always telling you what to do and where to go on the field. Off it he was a talker and it was always about football. Liverpool need that type of player right now – someone to wake them up.”
Garcia was one of those players at Liverpool who became more appreciated once he left – much like Maxi Rodriguez. The Spaniard scored 14 goals in all competitions during his debut campaign, and 11 the next – which is more than decent for a winger in Rafa Benitez’s then 4-4-1-1 formation.
His point is also fair. Disregarding technical skills and attributes, Carragher and Hyypia were warriors who thrived on big occasions. Lovren, Klavan and Joel Matip are talented, but none of them ruthlessly command the backline and inject a ‘You Shall Not Pass’ attitude into the side.
A solid, consistent defence is a must if Liverpool have genuine plans to compete for the title in the future, and for this reason, we should target a centre-back in the summer.
We’ve got prodigy Joe Gomez coming through the ranks of course, but with Mamadou Sakho no more and Klavan clearly not a long-term option, a top defender come the end of this campaign may be key.