By Coral Barry
Liverpool will struggle to score goals at Stamford Bridge, Joao Teixeira is an unpolished gem and other things we learned from Liverpool 1 Bournemouth 0.
Goals won’t come easy at Chelsea
With an eye on Saturday’s clash with Chelsea at Stamford Bridge, Jurgen Klopp made nine changes from the side that were held by Southampton at the weekend. But with Christian Benteke expected to struggle to make the starting eleven and Daniel Sturridge not yet in full training, Klopp is likely be forced once again to place faith in Divock Origi. The Belgian has played in every one of Klopp’s games so far and has yet to score. Against a Bournemouth side that conceded five goals to Tottenham on Sunday, Origi was practically an invisible force up front unable as he failed to register a single shot on target. Ineffective and isolated, it is difficult to see the Belgian breaking his duck against Chelsea. Where will the goals come from if Benteke and Sturridge are absent?
Watching Teixeira is a real treat
With three Liverpool youngsters making their debuts tonight, 22-year-old Joao Teixeira stole the show from his academy colleagues. The Portuguese had a touch and flair not dissimilar to Liverpool’s established maestro, Philippe Coutinho. It was his audacious back-heel that was cleared off the line that gave Nathaniel Clyne the easiest of tap-ins for the first goal, a spectacular piece of individualism indicative ofthe playmaker’s confidence and quality. A broken leg on loan at Brighton Hove Albion last year hampered his development, but with Klopp at the helm, Teixeira is sure to be given plenty more opportunities to shine.
Bogdan lays down his marker
The shoot-out hero in his last appearance for Liverpool – against Carlisle in this competition -Adam Bogdan again impressed between the sticks. A new era on Merseyside has presented the goalkeeper with another opportunity to lay claim to the No1 spot. The 28-year-old could not have done anymore to show that Simon Mignolet has competition. Two outstanding saves in the first half, one after just five minutes, and one at the death to preserve Klopp’s first win as Liverpool manager, Bogdan was extremely impressive. Assured in the air, no nonsense with the ball at his feet, Bogdan is everything Mignolet hasn’t been for Liverpool in the last year.
Allen on his last chance
He may have a new beard to show off, but it was much the same story from Joe Allen tonight. Forever nailed to the Brendan Rodgers regime – he was memorably described as the ‘Welsh Xavi’ when signed by the Northern Irishman in 2012 – Allen was guilty of playing it safe once again tonight. A reckless tackle that earned him a yellow card was about as exciting as it got for Allen as he struggled to make any meaningful impact on the game. As January approaches, Klopp will soon be stamping his mark on the squad and there might well be no room for the Welshman.
Youth will prosper under Klopp
Mario Goetze and Marco Reus are two of the world’s most coveted players and they were both nurtured to stardom by Klopp at Borussia Dortmund. Liverpool will be hoping he can pick out similar gems in Merseyside and the German’s selections tonight have suggested he is eager to do just that. Impressed by the training displays of Connor Randall, Cameron Brannagan and Teixeira since taking over, the manager handed the youngsters a chance tonight and simultaneously signalled his intent to cultivate Liverpool’s abundant youth ranks.