Prior to this season most Liverpool supporters assumed Adam Lallana’s time at Anfield was up after playing less than a bit-part role in Jürgen Klopp’s Champions League winning side of last season. Yet the 31-year-old midfielder has worked his way back into the fold, making 18 appearances so far this campaign, with a telling contribution along the way.
While the Englishman may not start many matches, it’s apparent that Jürgen Klopp is ready to trust Lallana on the biggest of stages. He was the pioneer of the Klopp press, and although there’s a mutual understanding that this season will signal a parting of ways, the relationship remains an excellent one.
Adam Lallana’s Liverpool career has been a peculiar one; at first he was widely perceived as an underwhelming £25million signing. From there he rallied to become our best player in 2016/17, only for injuries to consign him to the fringes once again. While Lallana’s injury record is a concern, his ability to become a first-team contender after setback should be applauded.
Jürgen Klopp’s current midfield situation is noticeably thinner than it was before the start of the new year, with injuries to Naby Keïta, James Milner, Fabinho and the ongoing re-development of Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain’s fitness testing resources. In response Klopp hasn’t hesitated to rely on the Lallana while his usual mainstays work on getting back to their best.
Although Lallana is far from being categorised as a key player, the 31-year-old has popped up when we’ve needed him. Lallana won us a point at Old Trafford and played a vital role in assisting the lone goal in a 1-0 victory against Wolves. He’s proven his worth time and again to this side, and if Jürgen trusts him, the supporters should as well.
There really isn’t any doubt in the man’s quality, the only concern is his aforementioned injury track record.
Following Liverpool’s 1-0 victory against the Blues in the FA Cup Lallana claimed that although he wasn’t the youngest on the pitch (obviously), he felt like the fittest. We can only hope that his fitness continues to hold true as the midfielder has the continued trust of the manager, and should have earned the same from any doubting supporters.
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Adam Lallana is undoubtedly in the swansong of his Liverpool career. It seemed likely that he wouldn’t be an Anfield regular following last season, but unsurprisingly the number 20 is content to stick around to savour his part in Liverpool’s first Premier League title.
With a European Cup, Super Cup and Club World Cup in his Liverpool trophy cabinet already, Lallana has as much right as any Reds player to lift that Premier League trophy come May.
His best days are certainly behind him, but there’s no denying that a fully fit Lallana provides something to this side that every great Jürgen Klopp team demands: a leader. Whether it be leading the kids out in the FA Cup or the League Cup, leading by example on the training pitch or filling in when the first team needs him — Adam Lallana remains an important cog in this Liverpool wheel.
It will be sad day when the former England international plies his trade elsewhere come next season. Before then, he is owed at least one more trophy to add to his personal tally.