Liverpool 1-0 Napoli: 5 Talking Points, UEFA Champions League 2018-19
#3 Liverpool’s full-backs have a field day
A lot of Liverpool’s success in the Champions League last season was based on their ability to win the battle on the flanks and bombard the opposition with attacks. On Tuesday night, it again came to the fore with Robertson and Alexander-Arnold giving the Napoli back-line a tough time.
On many an occasion, Liverpool overloaded one side of the pitch and quickly switched their play to the other side, thus exploiting the space Napoli’s wingers left behind. To compound the Italian side’s misery, their wingers Insigne and Callejon never really tracked back.
With the Napoli wingers failing to help out, the full-backs created a numerical advantage more often than not. The Reds’ full-backs played high up the pitch and provided the required width to slice open Napoli’s defence.
Robertson and Alexander-Arnold have come by leaps and bounds since last season and are vital to Liverpool’s offensive play these days. While they were always willing runners, the duo has recently started showing off a better end-product.
Thus, with them in the mix, Liverpool’s famed front three can go about wreaking havoc inside the penalty area, rather than hogging the touchline.
Liverpool out-played Napoli in nearly every area of the pitch yet their supremacy on the flanks could just have been the factor that tilted the game in their favour once and for all.