After their elimination from the UEFA Champions League in midweek, Liverpool turn their attentions back to the Premier League tonight by travelling to Elland Road to take on Leeds United.
Jurgen Klopp will be desperate to secure three points as the Reds aim to secure a top four finish, despite the looming prospect of the Super League proposals.
In order to do that, he must start midfielder Curtis Jones for the first time in the league since early March.
At just the age of 20, the Reds’ academy graduate is already the club’s highest-scoring midfielder this season with four goals. Couple this with the four assists that he has already managed to accumulate and that takes his total direct goal contributions to eight.
For comparison, the next most productive midfielder in the Reds’ squad is Georginio Wijnaldum who has only managed to score on three occasions, whilst having not managed to tee up his teammates at all.
Considering Jones has started just 21 matches in all competitions for the reigning Premier League champions, that is a remarkable achievement.
It is no surprise then when looking at Jones’ statistics per match, he continues to outperform his somewhat more illustrious teammates.
Meanwhile, only Jordan Henderson and Thiago Alcantara account for more key passes per 90 minutes than Jones in league play, whilst the latter only just outdoes his 1.1 dribbles per game.
It goes without saying then that should Jones be included, the Reds will surely be more of a threat, of course, a useful asset as Liverpool attempt to seal what could be a key three points in their pursuit of a top-four finish.
Previously labelled as “unbelievable” by the Reds’ U23 coach Gary O’Neil, the England U21 midfielder simply has to be selected from the start at Elland Road if he’s passed fit after missing out against Aston Villa and Real Madrid.