Dejan Lovren has been one of the success stories of this campaign, in our opinion.
Back in October, the Croat spoke out after receiving online death threats from Liverpool ‘fans’. He’d also just had his house broken into and was hauled off in the first-half of a 4-1 battering by Spurs at Wembley.
Many questioned whether he’d even play for us again, in fact.
But the kept his head down, worked hard, and has thrived alongside Virgil van Dijk since the Dutchman’s £75m arrival from Southampton.
Supporters assumed Joel Matip would be van Dijk’s partner, but Lovren has climbed ahead of the Cameroonian in the pecking order and will start the Champions League Final on Saturday as a result.
Jurgen Klopp has given an honest interview to Robbie Fowler in which he discusses Lovren – and his continuing belief that Lovren is elite – despite what happened at Wembley.
“The Tottenham game I was angry. It wasn’t I was saying, ‘boys, never mind it can happen, forget about it’. Not even one per cent of that. I was really angry,” he told our former striker, who was conducting an interview for the Mirror.
“I took Dejan off after 25 minutes and I didn’t speak to him afterwards.
“But then a few days later I saw him waiting for my talk, so I said, come in. ‘You took me off after 20 minutes’. Because you were bad.
“But I said to him – maybe this was the decisive moment when he got it – I think he’s a world class centre half, 100 per cent.
“Yes with weakness, concentration can happen from time to time, could be harder here, whatever. But he is a world class centre half, otherwise he would not be here any more.”
At EOTK, we think that while Lovren may have world-class ability, his lack of consistency and the manner in which he makes mistakes when everything seems to be going well, means he is not yet worthy of that tag.
However, van Dijk’s been fantastic for him and the partnership undeniably has potential long-term.
First though, he needs to put in the performance of his life against Cristiano Ronaldo and co. this weekend.