Jurgen Klopp defends Trent Alexander-Arnold after England omission

Jurgen Klopp would pick “exceptional” Trent Alexander-Arnold in any team after the full-back was overlooked by England manager Gareth Southgate.

The Liverpool defender, 23, did not figure against Italy and was dropped from the squad that drew with Germany.

Reds boss Klopp says there is “space for improvement” in Alexander-Arnold’s defensive game, but his offensive ability is “so extreme”.

“I’d decide obviously differently, but I’m not in charge,” said Klopp.

“My point of view, it’s an easy pick. Whichever team I would coach in the moment, I would sign him because he is exceptional.”

Southgate has said he feels Alexander-Arnold’s “all-round game” is behind that of right-back rival Kieran Trippier.

Alexander-Arnold, who missed last year’s European Championship through injury, has made just one international appearance this year.

He has been a key player for a Liverpool side that has won the Premier League and Champions League in recent years, but he has struggled to transfer that form to international football and has won just 17 caps since his 2018 debut.

“There are stories out there all the time that talk about him and say he’s not a good defender, but that’s not true,” said Klopp.

“A world-class talent gets judged by the one thing he is not as world class at as the other things. If he was not a good defender, he would not play.

“The skillset he has for being influential in possession is mad for a right-back.

“I don’t know if I ever saw a right-back like this – passing here, passing there, switching sides, taking free-kicks, corners, smart decisions, quick decisions.

“He is an outstanding football player in a situation where three other right-backs in this country are doing really well. We should not forget that.

“So the view on that is how influential can Trent be? That is number one. What is he good at? That is how you judge a player.”

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Herman Nnyanzi 'The Analyst' is a Ugandan multimedia sports journalist who started his career in 2017. He has a genuine strong love for sports and expertise, especially football. Contact me on +256704472629 or +256786403603

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