Jamie Carragher has told CBS Sports Champions League (21/10/20 at 11:00 pm) that he feels Liverpool’s Sport Science team were the ones making the substitutions for Jurgen Klopp yesterday.
Liverpool recorded a 1-0 win over Ajax in their opening Champions League group game, with Jordan Henderson coming on at half-time for Curtis Jones.
Added with that, the front three – Sadio Mane, Roberto Firmino and Mo Salah – all came off on the hour mark.
Carragher believes a number of the decisions made last night where pre-planned and he ‘wouldn’t be surprised’ if Klopp wasn’t the one making the call on the front three coming off.
“The interesting thing tonight was that there was a lot changes in the team,” Carragher told CBS. “I think going forward, because of the situation at centre-back, I think there will be a lot of rotations.
“It almost felt like the game was planned before the game. We have just said with the sports science team basically picked the team because of the injury situation and I wouldn’t be surprised if they picked when the subs were happening as well.
“For the front three to come off all at once after an hour, I don’t think the front three have ever come off all together at the same time. It will never have happened.
“The substitution at half-time, Curtis Jones, the youngster, for Henderson. It feels like that would have been pre-planned as well.”
The notable absentee for Liverpool was, of course, Virgil van Dijk, with Fabinho stepping in at the heart of the club’s defence alongside Joe Gomez.
It could be argued that Fabinho was perhaps the best player on the pitch and it’s a positive sign for a team who has just lost such a prominent figure at the back.
The performance of Fabinho will be the most interesting one because he showed against Chelsea, and now in the Champions League, that he can fill in at centre-back, so will Klopp now keep him there for the long run?