For the second weekend in a row, Liverpool lost ground in the Premier League, but everything is not lost. The Reds may have missed the chance to lead before the international break in October, but other teams’ performances have sparked an exciting early title competition.
Jurgen Klopp’s team knew they had been unfairly treated after losing to Tottenham Hotspur last weekend, but against Brighton & Hove Albion on Sunday, the only ones to blame for earning just one point were present on the AMEX Stadium field.
Given that Brighton is a difficult opponent and that Ange Postecoglou’s Spurs are only three points ahead of Arsenal in the standings, a draw would not be the worst possible result.
In addition, Klopp is aware that his ambitious team will have a favorable run of Premier League opponents before the nerve-wracking journey to the Etihad Stadium to face Manchester City at the end of November.
After a disastrous 2022–23 season that produced rotten fruit, Liverpool will play in the Europa League. This presents an excellent opportunity for squad rotation, and while the Champions League’s rhythm teases the Anfield side, early season progress suggests a top–four finish is more than possible.
Since Fabinho, Jordan Henderson, and James Milner, who were formerly affluent, intense, and unrelenting, were not performing to the required quality and all have since gone on during the summer, the midfield that had been let to rot was largely to blame for last season’s failure.
A more dynamic group has emerged in their place, with the all-consuming Dominik Szoboszlai posing as the most significant acquisition since Virgil van Dijk joined the central defense. Ryan Gravenberch and Wataru Endo are intriguing additions in different ways, with the former, at the age of 21, really coming into his own.
In July, Liverpool made its first summer signing when they acquired Alexis Mac Allister from Brighton for a pittance of £35 million. This was done after Liverpool finished fifth the previous season.
The Argentine played a key role in the Seagulls securing European football for the first time in their history as well as winning the 2022 World Cup in Qatar last season. So far, he has been reliable but unspectacular at his new team.
Alexis MacAllister scored how many goals in the previous campaign?
Mac Allister wasn’t quite a high-profile sensation a year ago, but he was a rising star nonetheless. Of course, that would change when his impressive club achievements earned him a spot in Lionel Scaloni’s World Cup roster.
The 19-cap international, who was termed “very intelligent” by his fellow countryman Sergio Aguero, established himself among the Premier League’s elite during the 2022–23 club season by scoring 12 goals and dishing out three assists in 40 games.
His accomplishments earned him the moniker “golden boy” for Albion, according to content producer Ryan Adsett. Despite interest from the finest teams in the Premier League, including Arsenal and Chelsea, Liverpool ultimately prevailed in the fight to sign him.
How is Liverpool’s Alexis MacAllister performing?
The fact that Mac Allister has played in a deep-lying midfield position for all eight of Liverpool’s Premier League games since his summer arrival does not mean that he has not yet found his footing at Anfield.
This is a result of Liverpool’s failure to acquire a star holding midfielder following Fabinho’s departure for the lucrative Saudi Pro League; Endo is a smart signing, but he is probably not effective enough to fill the position on a consistent basis.
It’s vital to keep in mind that the £150k-per-week ace’s performances have contributed to a renovated Anfield center that is not fit for purpose, but last season, it truly was not. Mac Allister’s ball-playing brilliance and intensity are qualities Klopp covets for his system.
He is in the top 16% of midfielders in the top five leagues in Europe for successful take-ons, top 18% for progressive carries, top 17% for shot-creating actions, and top 30% for progressive passes per 90 during the past year.
The latter metric emphasizes the necessity for an increase in forward passes to significantly aid Liverpool’s advancements; in contrast, pass ace Thiago Alcantara ranks in the top 6% for progressive passes made per 90.
Insofar as he directs inventiveness and precision via the forward lanes, Mac Allister has been helpful; whereas Liverpool’s offensive efforts from the center were an inconsistent trickle last year, they are now a cascading flood.
However, against his previous team, his positional shortcomings were exposed, and as reported by reporter Neil Jones, Liverpool’s attempt to secure three points was hampered by his “struggle” against Roberto De Zerbi’s agile team.
Should Alexis Mac Allister be dropped by Liverpool?
The 5-foot-8 machine has an accuracy rate of 89% in the Premier League this season, yet he only generates 0.4 critical passes per game, makes 2.5 tackles, and recovers 6.1 balls per game, highlighting a change in duty.
He once again shown his admirable core traits on the south coast, but he was slow to react to Van Dijk’s pass that signaled danger, and he was dribbled past while also incurring three fouls.
He received a 5/10 from Liverpool Echo match reviewer Ian Doyle, who also said that he “just doesn’t look comfortable in the number six role” and “way too casual” while giving the ball away for Brighton’s opening strike. Nipped in to start the equalizer, but the second half was excellent.
Not the only Anfield star to commit a mistake, left-back Andrew Robertson also had a forgettable afternoon. The Scot was plagued by the erratic Simon Adingra and was unable to provide much of a meaningful offensive threat down the left side, earning a somewhat better 6/10 from Doyle. He also contributed to Lewis Dunk’s equalizer by failing to block Solly March’s teaser free kick, which allowed the Brighton defender to prod home unchallenged.
Despite being in excellent condition this season, the Scotland captain will receive little acclaim after that game but will undoubtedly keep his starting position on the left despite Kostas Tsimikas’ new contract extension.
Despite the fact that Curtis Jones is still serving a two-match suspension for being dismissed against Tottenham, Mac Allister is currently unable to say the same.
Declan Carr, a reporter, complimented the versatile Gravenberch for his “Rolls Royce” performances as he awaited his first Premier League appearance.
Although he may not be the most technically proficient player in Liverpool’s lineup, the hardworking Endo would add a more defensive perspective to the midfield and might add a tough component for the upcoming slate of games.
In the end, Liverpool are still in a good spot and might now continue with a string of victories over opponents that Klopp’s team ought to dispatch of (on paper, of course).
It’s not quite working in the current role, and there’s a growing sense that this budding phenomenon is unable to radiate the swagger at his disposal right now. Perhaps Mac Allister should be deployed higher up, with someone like Endo serving in the nub.