Liverpool welcomed back the Premier League with an excellent victory against Aston Villa that pulled them into sixth place. Among the changes to the injury-ridden side was Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain taking up the left side of the front three, an unfamiliar position.
After the game, Oxlade-Chamberlain was asked how he thought he did in the new role. He was honest in assessment, admitting that he thought he handled it well but could have done better.
“I think I did OK,” he told the official site. “I just tried to make sure I did the defensive job for the team. Obviously playing out on the left, it’s a little bit new and we are doing it slightly different.
“I think when Bobby plays up front he’s the one who comes deep, but with Darwin and Mo they stretch it and I have to be the one that sort of drops in deep, deeper from the front line, then has to get up and support as well, so I’m learning that. I feel like in the first half I did alright.
“I would have liked to have been able to impact the game a little bit more at times but in that period [in the] first 10 minutes of the second half it was a bit difficult to get a grip on the press.”
Oxlade-Chamberlain stepped up to fill in the void of several missing attackers. He might need to continue in that role as the games continue to come thick and fast. Though, as we are all unfortunately aware, he is not exactly known for his ironclad fitness either. Klopp may opt to rotate others there in order protect his player. We may even see new addition Cody Gakpo figuring into the plans in January.