Liverpool supporters have been making a lot of noise in recent times after seeing their team head into the season’s first international break with a 100% record and indeed top of the Premier League table.
Jurgen Klopp’s men were tipped by many during the summer to be challenging champions Manchester City for the title this term, and their start suggests that that could well be the case. The Reds have won each of their opening four league games in getting past West Ham, Crystal Palace, Brighton, and Leicester City, and in conceding just once and netting on nine occasions, things are certainly looking good for the Merseyside giants.
Thus, there have been many thrilled Liverpudlians up and down the country in recent times, some of whom have taken to Twitter to call for manager Klopp to start winger Xherdan Shaqiri against Tottenham on Saturday.
And while the £100,000-a-week star (as per Spotrac) did well for his country during the international break, those Reds fans are wrong to suggest that he has earned a start against Mauricio Pochettino’s Spurs at the weekend.
Ultimately, while the trio of Roberto Firmino, Sadio Mane, and Mohamed Salah haven’t yet produced the level of performance they did last term, they have all still made mightily fine starts to the season to suggest that dropping them would be pretty harsh – and it’s likely that one would have to make way for 26-year-old Shaqiri.
Senegal international Mane has perhaps been the best of the three in bagging four goals in his opening four Premier League matches, yet messrs Salah and Firmino have also produced the goods, with the former netting twice and laying on two assists, while the Brazil international has scored one fewer than the Egyptian.
Thus, the form of the trio is still very good if not quite at the lofty standards of last term, and with Klopp having opted for a 4-3-3 formation for much of the last 12 months or so, it’s difficult to see how Shaqiri fits in unless he disposes one of the front three.
And with the trio performing so effectively as a unit in recent times, breaking that up may well reduce the efficiency of the other two in the front line – it would be a massive risk by Klopp against a fellow top six side, in a game which could go some way to underlining Liverpool’s title credentials.
Yes, Swiss star Shaqiri is sure to be a huge asset to Klopp as the season wears on, but he should not be tempted into starting the 26-year-old at the expense of his front three at Wembley this weekend.
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