Liverpool had a very impressive summer transfer window, but now the hard work begins.
Jurgen Klopp’s side will open their season with a Premier League clash against West Ham United at Anfield on Sunday.
The Reds’ strengthened their midfield with the signings of Fabinho and Naby Keita, while Xherdan Shaqiri arrived from Stoke City to boost the club’s attacking options.
Alisson has become Liverpool’s new number one goalkeeper following his big-money move from Roma, but there is one problem area that was never addressed.
Klopp opted not to bring in a new centre-back, despite the fact that the team have had many problems in defence.
Virgil van Dijk’s arrival in January certainly improved matters, but the Dutchman does not have a solid partnership.
Dejan Lovren, Ragnar Klavan and Joel Matip are the obviously options, but only the latter could potentially be fit for this Sunday’s encounter.
Joe Gomez predominantly plays at right-back, but he could slot into the central area if needs be.
However, he too needs to be assessed before being passed fit to join the matchday squad.
Klopp says Klavan no chance, Lovren not available. Matip/Gomez to be assessed. #LFC
— James Pearce (@JamesPearceEcho) August 10, 2018
Klopp confirmed this news in his pre-match press conference, which has led many fans to suggest that 21-year-old Nathaniel Phillips should start.
The Bolton-born defender is inexperienced and yet to make his competitive debut for the Reds, but some supporters think that his pre-season performances are enough to warrant him a start.
Others, though, feel nervous about the situation.
Start Phillips imo
— Owen (@OSMLFC) August 10, 2018
Nat Phillips is a quality young player, this could be the making of him. Hope he gets a chance and we don’t play someone like Fabinho out of position.
— Phil Hughes (@salvelectori) August 10, 2018
— Mack (@Bxateng) August 10, 2018
People suggesting Phillips like this is our last pre season friendly, this is a must win league game, let’s be more tried and trusted before throwing kids in the deep end, his time will come
— stricky (@strickyfootball) August 10, 2018
Phillips it is then
— 🔴 (@JackHig96) August 10, 2018
Phillips first day of the season. Standard.
— Matthew Smith (@htimsttam) August 10, 2018
Announce Nat Phillips in starting XI
— Tom 🏴 (@TomTannerr) August 10, 2018