Curtis Jones scored his first Premier League goal of the season, helping Liverpool to a 2-0 win away at Sheffield United with Roberto Firmino forcing an own goal for the Reds’ second at Bramall Lane.
It was a much improved Liverpool performance following on from recent poor results which saw them struggle in front of goal. From the start of the game against The Blades it was clear Jürgen Klopp had tweaked the system to allow certain players to occupy more advanced roles. One of those to benefit was Jones.
The No.17 thrived in his attacking midfield position. Across the match he took four shots, more than any other player and his attempts at goal resulted in the games opener.
The 20-year-old took his goal excellently, as Trent Alexander-Arnold’s cross was cleared into the path of the midfielder. Jones then powerfully placed the ball into the bottom-left corner to give his side the lead, a goal that the Englishman later dedicated to Alisson Becker and his family after the death of his father.
Besides his goal, the Scouser was also a danger for the home- ide as he looked to dribble with pace towards the opposition’s goal at any opportunity. His passing was another highlight from the game with the youngster only misplacing one pass from 27 attempted. Within those 27 passes, he created one chance for his side.
Usually Jones would be involved defensively for the Reds, but according to average positions against Sheffield United, the academy graduate was deployed in a ‘front five’ with Andy Robertson and the midfielder joining the attack. In fact, only Mohamed Salah had a more advanced average position than Jones.
Despite his lack of defensive duties, he did manage to win one interception, complete one ball recovery and was involved in three ground duels throughout the game.
The Toxteth-born midfielder was substituted in the 80th minute to give the returning Naby Keïta a bit of tine on the pitch after recovering from his latest injury, with his almost flawless performance earning him the man of the match award.Embed from Getty Images
The question now for Jürgen Klopp is whether he can get the most out of Jone’s talent and ability in a more attacking role, or if it just a one-off tactical decision against a certain opposition.
Liverpool next play Chelsea on Thursday night where the Reds have a chance to overtake Thomas Tuchel’s side with a win against the Londoners.
Don’t miss a thing
Get new content delivered directly to your inbox. It’s free!