'A real asset' – Manager heaps praise on Liverpool star after man-of-the-match display
By George Brooks
England manager Gareth Southgate has heaped praise on Liverpool defender Joe Gomez after his man-of-the-match performance against Brazil at Wembley last night.
The 20-year-old was the standout player for the Three Lions on his full debut as they held the five-time World Cup winners to a goalless draw.
The England manager was full of praise for the Liverpool star.
“Joe has been given the man-of-the-match award and rightly so,” said Southgate, as quoted by Sky News.
“We know his athleticism is a real asset, but there was also his decision-making and his calmness in the face of high quality movement and high-quality passes that he had to read.”
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Gomez made his England debut on Friday night in the draw with World Cup holders Germany, when he replaced the injured Phil Jones in the first half.
The Liverpool youngster kept his place in the side last night ahead of Chelsea’s Gary Cahill.
Gomez has been used on the right side of the Liverpool defence by boss Jurgen Klopp this season but he was one of three central-defenders last night.
The Englishman has nine Premier League appearances this season but he proved his quality on the international stage against a Brazil attack lead by Neymar and Gabriel Jesus.
He made a crucial interception to deny a Neymar through pass and he also made an outstanding covering tackle on his Liverpool teammate Roberto Firmino.
England have two friendly matches against the Netherlands and Italy in March, two sides who failed to qualify for the World Cup in Russia next summer.
Gomez will be hoping he can force his way back into Southgate’s plans ahead of the tournament.
Meanwhile, Liverpool return to Premier League action against Southampton on Saturday.
In other Liverpool news, this Reds striker is hoping to reignite a former rivalry for England.