Murphy urges Liverpool to drop ‘struggling’ defender

Date published: Thursday 31st December 2020 9:08 - Joe Williams

Jordan Henderson Liverpool

Danny Murphy has urged Liverpool to replace Nathaniel Phillips with Jordan Henderson at centre-back as the defender “struggled” in their 0-0 draw against Newcastle United on Wednesday night.

Mohamed Salah missed the target either side of half-time with just keeper Karl Darlow to beat, and strike-partner Roberto Firmino, who saw two headers superbly saved, was similarly profligate at St James’ Park.

Three days after lowly West Brom struck late to snatch a point at Anfield, Jurgen Klopp’s men – who have now won only two of their eight league away games this season – were frustrated once again, although it took a late goal-line clearance from Fabian Schar and Darlow’s brilliance to keep them at bay.

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At the other end, Callum Wilson’s pace troubled the Reds’ backline on occasion and Murphy reckons Henderson should move back into defence with Phillips coming out of the line-up.

“I think he [Phillips] struggled a bit at times. He got the booking in the second half when he was out of position a couple of times,” Murphy told Stadium Astro.

“He looked a bit nervy tonight, I think in the forthcoming games we’ll probably see a change there. I’d be surprised if he keeps his place, to be honest.

“I know he gives that aerial presence, but depending on who you play against, I don’t think you can only be in the team for that, you need a little bit more.

“He has played Rhys Williams, he’s played Jordan Henderson there, we’ll have to wait and see. I think he was a bit in awe of Wilson at times, a bit in fear of him, you could sense it. I felt uneasy when he was around Wilson. They still kept a clean sheet, to be fair to them.”



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