Former Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand has called out Trent Alexander-Arnold for his role in Real Madrid’s winner against Liverpool in their UEFA Champions League Round-of-16 second leg. He believes the right-back made no effort to support his centre-backs and switched off at the crucial moment.
Karim Benzema scored the only goal on Wednesday night as Real Madrid eased past Liverpool in the UEFA Champions League. The Spanish side went through to the quarterfinals 6-2 on aggregate after picking up a stunning 5-2 win at Anfield last month.
Speaking on BT Sport, Ferdinand was quick to point fingers at Trent and claimed that the right-back was switching off in the game. He added that the defender did not try to support his center-backs and did not see Vinicius Jr. running away.
“I just want to take it back, what I want you to see is as the ball goes into the centre forward Trent Alexander-Arnold – here he is. You’ve got to be thinking defensively, you’ve got to be thinking ‘my two centre halves are in trouble, there’s gonna be a chance and there could be a ball coming in here at some point, or at least let me get myself back in to cover my defenders’. That’s got to be your first and only thought in this phase of play.”
“The ball goes through, then look at the separation as the ball comes down to Vinicius there. As he touches that ball he’s gone from being side-by-side to being five yards behind the player he was marking – that’s a world class attacking player who you can’t take your eyes off. How he’s got separation within two seconds-ish to get five yards and a chance at goal, he’ll be looking at that and thinking I could do better there, Trent, because you can’t switch off at this level.”
Liverpool eliminated by Real Madrid again in the Champions League
Liverpool’s journey in the UEFA Champions League was brought to an end again by Real Madrid.
The Spanish side have now beaten the Reds four times in the last six seasons – twice in the final.
The Reds are out of the FA Cup as well and are now left with just the top four to fight for in the Premier League.