Jurgen Klopp’s faith in his players is one of his most admirable traits as a manager, and it’s clear that his belief in midfielder Adam Lallana hasn’t diminished in recent times.
The England international has endured a miserable few years with injuries, and has been ruled out of Saturday’s game against Brighton & Hove Albion.
Klopp, though, still values the former Southampton man: “He’s had a few issues now but he’s a fantastic player,” he said at his pre match press conference, as per the Liverpool Echo.
“I am still completely positive. Would I like to have him available? Yes, 100%. It’s brilliant to have him around as he can cool games down, he can be creative between the lines, he still has speed and all these things.”
Clearly the German still thinks the world of the 30-year-old, who is on a reported £65,000-per-week at the club [Source: Spotrac].
It’s up to the player now to prove Klopp correct and turn around his spiralling Liverpool career. Lallana has always been a fabulous talent but if you can’t get on the pitch you are worthless to your manager.
That is the problem with Lallana now, and you wonder whether this Reds team has passed him by. As Klopp says he’s someone who slows games down, that’s by design, but that’s not necessarily where this Liverpool team excels.
When Klopp’s team have had success in recent years it’s been by blitzing the opposition. They employed that tactic to fantastic success in their run to the Champions League final last season.
Lallana, though, doesn’t fit in with that way of playing. It’s up to him, then, to adapt and show that he can still be a positive influence on his team.
When your manager believes in you as much as Klopp clearly does in Lallana it must be hugely motivational. Now, the Englishman needs to reward his manager’s faith and nail down a spot in the first team in the second half of the season – he has the talent to do so, there’s no doubt about that.
If he’s unable to do that, and to stay off the treatment table, then he can kiss his Reds career goodbye. It’s time to prove his manager correct and finally live up to his potential at Anfield.