Video ‘Proves’ That Liverpool’s Trent Alexander-Arnold Cannot Defend
A video showing the defensive flaws of Liverpool right-back Trent Alexander-Arnold has been provoking a fierce amount of debate online.
Alexander-Arnold’s place in the England team – and indeed squad – for this summer’s Euros has divided football fans between those he say he’s one of Europe’s elite full-backs and doubters who claim he simply cannot defend.
“Trent on the attack: Messi. Trent in defence: Phil Jones,” is just one comment under the YouTube video which compiles the 22-year-old’s positional errors, poor one-on-one defending and outright mistakes leading to goals.
Now, we might add that you could probably make a two-and-half-minute disaster video of any player – even Messi himself – if you just select the very worst clips.
But there is definitely an opinion, even among Alexander-Arnold’s admirers, that he’s a far better offensive full-back than he is when opponents are taking him on.
“This is what makes I’m the most overrated player in world football,” said one commenter.
“Trent’s passing: legendary Trent’s defending: dogs***e,” claimed another.
“Benzema: pass it to TAA, on my mother’s life he is playing for us,” mimics another fan, in response to Alexander-Arnold’s struggles against Real Madrid in this season‘s Champions League.
Alexander-Arnold had a dip in form this season while Liverpool struggled, but has played a huge part in his club’s Champions League and Premier League wins over the last three years.
The full-back – who picked up a thigh injury in England’s friendly against Austria which may yet rule him out of the summer’s European Championship – has been an assist machine for Liverpool, registering 32 in the Premier League alone over the last three years.
Gareth Southgate came under serious criticism for leaving Trent out of his England squad for the World Cup qualifiers in March.
However there is a school of thought that while Alexander-Arnold works perfectly in Liverpool’s high-pressing set-up where he’s generally on the front foot, he isn’t the best in a more defensively-minded system where full-backs are part of a low block.
So perhaps there is some wisdom in Southgate’s seeming to prefer one of Kieran Tripper, Kyle Walker or Reece James for the right-back role.
Although one comment on the damning YouTube video we can all agree with is: “Do some montage and you can do this to any player!” True words,