Liverpool’s record when playing with three at the back hasn’t been too impressive this season yet Dejan Lovren hasn’t ruled out the team using it again in the future.
Jurgen Klopp opted to setup with Lovren alongside Joel Matip and Ragnar Klavan in last weekend’s clash with Stoke and, after a nervy start from his defenders, saw his decision rewarded with three points- admittedly thanks to some help from Simon Mignolet.
Experimenting with three at the back has emerged as a recurring theme to this Premier League season with teams keen to replicate the success Chelsea manager Antonio Conte has experienced since introducing the formation.
Lovren has talked up the chances of Liverpool playing with the same shape in Sunday’s game against West Brom.
“Stoke is a similar team [to West Brom] with long balls, and we played the system quite well in the second half,” he told Liverpoolfc.com.
“I think it’s a perfect mix for us – [Joel] Matip in the middle, me on the right because I’m right-footed, and Raggy [Klavan] on the left because he’s left-footed. It’s quite a good mix.”
“But also, if we change [formation], we know what we need to do. Again, the vital thing for us is to play football and hopefully we won’t be 1-0 down like against Stoke.”
“We need to just believe in ourselves. This, I think, is the main thing – self-confidence for every one of us. We know that we can score always.”
The team’s progress has been somewhat hampered at times by key injuries following a disappointing start to 2017 that also disrupted our form, yet the belief that goals can come from anywhere in this squad has refused to disappear.
There remains to be some uncertainty surrounding the use of three at the back yet it has the potential to be a wise decision this weekend given the aerial threat West Brom carry and the attacking power Tony Pulis has at his disposal.
It would pose as the kind of fearless approach we expected to see from Klopp at some point when he first arrived at Liverpool.