Martin Skrtel backs Dejan Lovren to overcome difficult start at Liverpool

Skrtel was impressed with Lovren's performance in Sunday's win over Manchester City.

Liverpool defender Martin Skrtel has backed Dejan Lovren to come good at the club after a difficult start to life on Merseyside.

Lovren was brought in for an eye-watering £20 million from Southampton during the summer as Brendan Rodgers looked to strengthen his defence following a season where they leaked 50 goals.

Instead of tightening things up he had a rather error-strewn start to the campaign as the whole side struggled, with the Reds struggling in the bottom half of the table in November.

After a spell out of the side he has been slowly reintroduced into the team by playing a few cameo appearances as part of the back three, before featuring more prominently recently in the absence of Mamadou Sakho, and there have been signs of improvement.

Skrtel told the Liverpool website: "It's not easy to come to a club like Liverpool, because it's a big club and expectations are very high. It's not easy to come in and perform well from the first day until the last.

"In football and life you have bad days and better days - that's normal. I believe Dejan will perform well. He is showing his quality every day in training and also in the games he has played. I just hope he will carry on this way until the end of the season."

Skrtel himself had a difficult time fitting in during his early days at Liverpool, with a forgettable debut against Havant & Waterlooville in an FA Cup tie where he had a part to play in both of the non-league side's goals that day, so can sympathise when things go wrong for a defender, like when Lovren missed the decisive spot-kick in the Europa League against Besiktas.

He added: "It wasn't easy for him after the game against Besiktas, because he missed the penalty. But you can't blame him for that; penalties are always a big risk and a lottery.

"He's the one who missed, but that's football and that's life. He responded well and played really well on Sunday, helping the team to get three points."

Like with the rest of Liverpool's defenders, there has been a marked improvement with the switch to a back three, and there seems to be some with Lovren. It'll be interesting to see if he keeps his place in the side in the upcoming weeks with Mamadou Sakho due to return to the line-up soon.

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