Blown away: Henderson suggests everyone missing what ‘outstanding’ Liverpool teammate does off the ball

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Jordan Henderson was not reserved with his praise for Trent Alexander-Arnold following Liverpool’s latest win on the road against West Ham United.

Rightly so, of course, given that the fullback’s freedom to roam into midfield when in possession has enabled the Reds to be a far more threatening prospect for opposition outfits than has been the case for much of the current season.

What seems most striking from the England international’s review, however, is the idea that the tactical tweak has made the Merseysiders more devastating on the counter-press, something the club has struggled with all season.

“We can build confidence within games. It’s been a bit easier to play through the middle, to get on the ball and create more. I think Trent has been outstanding in that position,” the skipper told James Pearce at The Athletic.

“It’s something new for him and I think it’s like a new stimulus for him. He is learning it all the time and it’s a different position than before. He has been really good there, getting on the ball in dangerous areas and getting further infield.

“He can hurt teams and that’s helped us over the last few games, especially in terms of winning the ball back in the middle. I know everyone talks about Trent with the ball, which is great, but he also gives us an extra man in the middle when we lose the ball with the counter-press. That’s been something that we have been much better at in the last few weeks.”

It seems to be working wonders for Fabinho in the double pivot, with the Brazil international having less ground to cover – it shows in the stats, as the former Monaco man registered three tackles, and just as many interceptions and clearances in London.

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We don’t seem to be suffering in the backline either, thanks to the efforts of Ibrahima Konate, not to forget stand-in centre-half Joel Matip who was brought in to ensure the Frenchman didn’t exacerbate his fitness concerns.

[Time for Trent Alexander-Arnold to move into the midfield? Five assists in his last four games represents a stunning turnaround – (Photo by BEN STANSALL/AFP via Getty Images)]

This does then raise an interesting question for the future of the midfield, given that the club must come up with a different plan to address changing roles in the department.

There’s still a need for numbers, even with Curtis Jones also flourishing in the left midfield role, to ensure that we have the tools necessary to mount a quick return to top four football, if need be.

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