Adam Lallana has sympathised with Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain as the Liverpool man continues to struggle for game time under Jurgen Klopp this season.
The former Arsenal man has contributed three goals and three assists in 29 appearances for the Reds this term, but the majority of those appearances have come from the bench.
The Ox has not featured in the Premier League since February and despite Klopp making nine changes for Liverpool’s trip to Southampton on Tuesday, the 28-year-old was still an unused substitute.
“It has been a tough few months for [Oxlade-Chamberlain],” Lallana told BBC Radio 5 Live Sport (via Football365).
“Not being involved, I have been there myself. It’s hard to manage your own ego at times because you want to be playing.
“You feel sorry for yourself. At times, you do have to act. When you are down, you have to put a brave face on to support your team-mates. And you can be proud of doing that.”
This season certainly hasn’t been an easy one for the No. 15.
We all know that he has ability and on his day he can be a real game changer, but as we’ve remained in contention for the quadruple all season long and our midfield has performed consistently, he hasn’t been awarded a regular run of games.
The season that we got to the Champions League final in Kyiv, Oxlade-Chamberlain was one of our most important players before suffering the serious knee injury against AS Roma in the semi-final first leg at Anfield.
He was therefore ruled out of the final which we went on to lose 3-1 to Real Madrid.
And despite his game time being limited this season, Lallana still believes the England international has ‘contributed’ significantly to the cause.
“Come the end of the season, he has contributed. When the lads were at AFCON in January, he put in some unbelievable performances,” the Brighton man added.
“He scored some important goals, so he has contributed massively. It was great to see him on the bench and celebrate with his players [after Tuesday’s 2-1 win over Southampton].”
We wouldn’t blame the Ox for wanting to seek a new challenge this summer, he’s still got time on his side and could move somewhere and become their main man.
His injury record isn’t great though, and that is one factor that may put off any potential suitors.
His current contract is set to expire next year, but it remains to be seen what will happen to the former Southampton man in the coming months when the transfer window opens.