Liverpool strengthened their first-team squad immensely during the summer. With multiple big-money signings joining the Merseysiders, including Sadio Mane and Georginio Wijnaldum, they have come straight into the starting XI and in doing so, have caused major headaches for Jurgen Klopp.
This can only be a good thing for both manager and fans. However, for those players who last season, started each game, this term, they have to work harder to prove that they deserve their spot back.
Here we take a look at three Liverpool players who need to work harder to get back in the starting XI.
It’s been a real up and down life for Simon Mignolet at Liverpool. The shot-stopper has come in for some real criticism over the years for his inconsistency while in between the sticks for the Merseyside club.
The Belgian can go from having a few good games, making real important, game-winning saves, all the way to conceding the most poor and sloppy goals.
Mignolet only started the season in goal for the Reds as new goalkeeper, Loris Karius, was out with a hand injury.
Karius: “We’ll have a good plan – or more than one plan – so we will be well prepared."https://t.co/sdTISg6ha6
— This Is Anfield (@thisisanfield) October 14, 2016
The moment that the German returned from injury, he was straight into the first team, and therefore meaning the previous number one, was dropped.
Mignolet needs to work hard now to prove to Klopp that he deserves another shot.
With Karius new to the Premier League, he may start to struggle at some point and the German coach may feel it necessary to switch it up and put the Belgian back in goal.
Things can change in a matter of games; if the Belgian continues to work hard in training and takes his opportunity, that you’d expect he’d get in the EFL Cup or FA Cup, then who knows – he could work his way back into the starting XI.
It has been a while since Liverpool have had two goalkeepers equally fighting for the starting spot and it’s also new territory for both men.
Last season under Jurgen Klopp, Emre Can became one of the regulars in the team.
The German midfielder was only second behind Nathaniel Clyne in terms of minutes played by an outfield player for Liverpool in 2015-16.
Klopp’s belief in the young midfielder was clear and Can was soon to be a fan favourite.
Wijnaldum to return to Melwood to be assessed. If he misses out Emre Can likely to start vs United. (James Pearce) https://t.co/n2bomdcybt
— Anfield HQ (@AnfieldHQ) October 10, 2016
However, now the former Bayer Leverkusen star faces a huge battle to get in the team.
Can was plagued with an ankle injury prior to the start of the season and by missing the first couple games, struggled to get back in.
He has only featured in three games this season and is yet to complete a full 90 minutes of football for the Reds.
With Adam Lallana, Jordan Henderson and Wijnaldum striking a fine balance in the middle of the park, the task to compete has become a lot harder.
The one thing that the young German has on his side is time. He is only 21 years old and has his whole future ahead of him.
Daniel Sturridge is up there as one of the best strikers in the Premier League, however, injury woes continue to plague his career and you never know when the next setback is around the corner.
Juventus are interested in signing one of out-of-favour Liverpool pair Divock Origi and Daniel Sturridge https://t.co/1K5CCKzcHp
— ㅤ (@SublimeStudge) October 4, 2016
As it stands, the front three of Philippe Coutinho, Roberto Firmino and Mane have really took the Premier League by storm and their combination of pace and skill are keeping the England international out of the squad.
It’s amazing really to think that Sturridge can’t get a game.
Now, while he is a striker who has scored 55 goals in 99 games for Liverpool, you still feel he can offer so much more.
Sometimes his lack of effort on-field when things aren’t going his way seems to effect him and his game. The problem with this is Klopp always asks his players to go full throttle all the time.
As much as he can go through poor fazes on-field, Sturridge can change a game in an instant.
The former Chelsea man may not touch the ball more than five times in a half, then with his first real chance, he’s more than likely to score. That’s the class of the player.