Klopp finds a long-haul patch

Liverpool fans voted Ozan Kabak the best player of the game against Leipzig. His arrival was accelerated by losses in defense.


The Liverpool season is marked by urgency. The one created when Virgil van Dijk got injured. Increased when Joe Gómez accompanied him on his long walk through the infirmary. And turned into a loud alarm when Klopp confirmed that Matip was also in danger of never wearing shorts again this season. Three centrals. Three injuries. A site: the center of defense.

Fabinho and Henderson proved to be good patches, but the solution, in addition to the physical mishaps that have also accompanied the former, became a problem when looking at a midfield who lost the muscle that the couple provides. For this reason, on the winter horn, Ben Davies and Ozan Kabak arrived. Two signings that, together with a still-young Rhys Williams, brought packaging to the center of the rear. The first came as a surprise, since he came from the Championship, but he inherited the problems of his now teammates, as he was injured days ago. The second was an old Liverpool wish. At first it was expected that the young Turk (he is 20 years old) would continue at least until the summer at Schalke 04. But the situation overflowed the operation and he became not only a future signing, but also a present need. A month later, in his first Champions League game, the fans crowned him the 'Man of the Match' (best player of the match) of the clash against Leipzig (0-2) .

A statistical Man of the Match

Salah and Mané took advantage of the mistakes made by Mukiele and Upamecano to score goals for the match, but keeping a clean sheet, given the problems of the last matches, seemed essential. And there, Kabak passed the exam with flying colors. Accompanied by Henderson, more focused on getting the ball out, Ozan won 7 of the 9 duels (77.8%) with the rival he had to face (only Mané, nightmare of the rival rear) presented better total numbers (14) , not percentage (73.7%). In addition, the Turk was the player with the most successful tackles of the team (4), without forgetting the security shown when dealing with the ball (43 successful passes out of 51, a 84.3%).

If in his first opportunity to defend his new shield, against Leicester, he did not have a fortunate performance (they lost 3-1 with Allison and the defense as the main culprits), he has made up for it on a night marked in blood red on the red calendar. SofaScore, statistical portal, gave him a 5.8 against the Foxes, but the doubts of his debut have been buried and his 7.5 against the Germans placed him ahead of his partner behind (Henderson was qualified with a 7). A numerical compendium that convinced the fans to show them that their presentation is forgotten.

At 20 years old, he has a world ahead of him. It is by no means a finished product, as it must polish many must, as a relative weakness when going to the crash. For this, he will have a good teacher as soon as Van Dijk recovers. In the meantime, he will have to act as a patch for Klopp and Liverpool. Although performances like the one given on his first big night show that his journey is long. Now, in this crash course you've been affiliated with, you must bury the temporary patch tag to become a lasting reality.

Photos from as.com
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