By Harvey Byrne
Football Insider analyses three talking points from Liverpool’s 0-0 draw with Southampton in Saturday afternoon’s Premier League clash at St Mary’s.
Daniel Sturridge must see more game time
Jurgen Klopp has favoured a front three of Philippe Coutinho, Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino this season, which has been successful to date, but on Saturday the lack of a natural striker cost the Reds the three points at St Mary’s. The Merseysiders had 15 shots over the 90 minutes with just two on target. Sturridge came on late in the game and had little time to make an impact, but his goals-to-pitch time ratio can not be questioned since joining Liverpool in 2013 and if he had more minutes against Southampton, Klopp’s side may now be heading home with the three points in the bag.
Virgil van Dijk will have impressed Liverpool onlookers
It’s no secret in recent years that Liverpool like to take the latest up and coming star from Southampton and commanding centre-back van Dijk may be the next one to move north given his display on Saturday. The Netherlands international helped to ensure the Saints their eighth clean sheet of the season and prevented attacker Firmino from getting any joy out of the clash. He has not missed a league clash for Southampton since joining from Celtic in the summer of 2015 and given that Liverpool’s defence has been a weakness in recent history, Klopp may be keeping a close eye on the 25-year-old. He’s contracted until 2022 though, so he won’t be leaving the south coast cheaply.
Firmino and Coutinho have to be rested after international breaks
The Brazilian duo are vital to the Reds attack, but given the demands of travelling to South America and then back to England when called upon to play for their national team, they’re taking two spots from players who could bring more to the game. The pair looked out of sorts against Southampton and lacked their usual sharpness which has seen them emerge as two of the best forwards in the country. Coutinho even played 86 minutes of Brazil’s 2-0 win over Peru on Wednesday before the club flew both players back on a private jet. With Sturridge and also Divock Origi waiting in the pecking order, Klopp also has two Premier League quality players to call upon when the Brazilians need to be rested.
In other Liverpool news, this in-form star must be given a new contract amid interest of a move away from Anfield.