Despite having scored more goals in the Premier League than any other team so far this season, Liverpool have managed to concede six times in their opening seven league games, more than the likes of Chelsea, Manchester City and Brighton & Hove Albion.
In the centre-back position, Jurgen Klopp currently has Virgil van Dijk, Joel Matip, Ibrahima Konate, Nat Phillips and Joe Gomez at his disposal.
One centre-back that Liverpool currently have out on loan is Sepp van den Berg, who is spending the season with Championship side Preston North End.
Liverpool signed Van den Berg back in the 2019 summer transfer window from Dutch club PEC Zwolle for a fee of £1.71m. Since then, the defender, who is currently valued at £2.25m according to Transfermarkt, has made 23 appearances for the U23 side and just four senior appearances.
Since arriving at Deepdale, van den Berg has made 14 appearances for the club across all competitions, managing to grab two goals in the process.
Interestingly, van den Berg, who has been described as a player with “magnificent energy” by Frankie McAvoy, has only played in the centre-back position on two occasions for Preston, both coming in the Carabao Cup.
In the Championship, the 19-year-old has been playing either as a right-back or a right-midfielder, showing just how versatile he can be on the pitch at such a young age.
Taking this into account, we feel that his versatility could well put him in a good position to return to Liverpool after his loan spell ends and potentially become a regular first-team player for the Reds at some point in the future.
Given how Gomez has only played 13 minutes of action in the Premier League so far this season, coming off the bench on two occasions, this says to us that he isn’t towards the top of the pecking order for centre-backs at the moment at Liverpool.
However, he has been a key member of the Reds in the past and has plenty of similarities to van den Berg. For starters, they are both versatile defenders with plenty of athletic traits, while crucially, they’ve now both progressed well in the Football League.
Before penning terms with Liverpool, Gomez progressed through the ranks at Charlton, an experience that has clearly played a vital part in his development.
Should the Dutchman’s progression continue, we feel that there is every chance that van den Berg could become the club’s next Gomez and even join him in the Liverpool defence.
If the teenager can prove to Klopp that he is capable of playing in numerous positions on the pitch, it will make him very useful member of the squad.