Premier League • England

‘It’s bizarre to me’ – Neville notices Liverpool star show aspect he has ‘never seen before’

Liverpool full-backs Trent Alexander-Arnold and Andy Robertson celebrating 2021

Gary Neville has compared the creative ability of Trent Alexander-Arnold to three of the greatest Premier League midfielders after describing his combination with opposite full-back Andy Robertson as the top-flight’s best ever.

Alexander-Arnold and Robertson were both heavily involved in Liverpool’s 2-2 draw away at Tottenham on Sunday. The left-back assisted the first goal and scored the second, which in turn was provided by Alexander-Arnold.

Robertson did not finish the match on the pitch; he got a red card for a reckless foul on Emerson Royal. But his influence beforehand had been positive. The same went for his fellow full-back.

The pair have been instrumental in Liverpool’s success in recent years. They have earned praise for their attacking contributions.

Alexander-Arnold in particular has stood out for the quality of his delivery. There have been calls for him to play in midfield in the past, although it seems clear right-back is where he is best.

Even so, Neville – a former full-back himself – compared Alexander-Arnold’s ability to three icons who have played further forward.

The Sky Sports pundit emphasised how good the partnership is after the Tottenham game. In doing so, he said Alexander-Arnold has surpassed what he would ever have expected to see from a player of his position.

“I don’t think I’ve seen two full-backs play in the Premier League that are as good as these two as a pair,” Neville said.

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“The way in which they combine on the pitch, the way they play the game, they’re an absolute joy.

“Robertson with his consistency does everything well. Defends well, he’s competitive – slightly too much at the end – but he scored a goal and set up a goal.

“Alexander-Arnold is an absolute phenomenon when it comes to the quality of his passing, his delivery. It’s something I’ve never seen before from a full-back.

“It’s like De Bruyne, it’s Beckham, it’s Gerrard, and they’re attacking players. He’s playing at right-back, it’s the highest accolade I could pay him.

“The contribution these two make is unbelievable. It’s bizarre to me. I grew up saying let the full-back have it. You can’t let these two have it.”

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Robertson reacts to red card

Andy Robertson being sent off for Liverpool

Although both full-backs for Liverpool had a positive impact on the pitch, Robertson could not leave it with his head held high.

The conversation after the game has mainly focused on the officiating. Robertson’s dismissal has not split opinion too much, but the fact that Harry Kane was not sent off for a studs-up challenge on the Scotland captain in the first half has raised questions.

Robertson has now broken his silence on what happened, hinting at his club’s dissatisfaction with the Kane incident but taking the blame for his own red card.

The left-back posted on Instagram: “I was brought up to take responsibility when you’ve done something wrong and I have to admit my challenge was poor and misjudged. My mistake giving them the chance to make the decision. Gutted!

“Probably best I don’t speak about the other things in the match, other than to say how proud I am of the rest of the team. Me aside, the boys were different class in unbelievably difficult circumstances.

“Support unreal as well in difficult times! Wish we could have rewarded it with a win!”

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