4 Nov 2015

Legend raves: 'Spectacular' £18m Liverpool star has finally 'stepped up' and 'emerged' as a 'leader'

In October, Liverpool conceded only five goals in seven games, and after years of defensive frailty under Brendan Rodgers, it appears that the team is on the path to a stable defensive unit. 'Spectacular' Reds Mamadou Sakho has played an integral role at the heart of Liverpool's defence, and according to John Aldridge, the £18m signing is finally fulfilling his undoubted potential.

In his column for the Liverpool Echo this week Aldo hailed Sakho and Skrtel for 'completely nullifying the threat of Diego Costa', and reserved some individual praise for Sakho:

"Sakho has really stepped up to the plate since Jurgen Klopp’s arrival. He looks like the defender we thought we were buying in 2013, and he’s emerged as a real leader on the field".

Unlike Rodgers, Klopp appears to have faith in Sakho, and having a manager's trust is often vital to a player's confidence.

It's hardly surprising that Sakho has 'emerged as a real leader'; he captained Paris St. Germain at the age of 17, and he has also captain the France national team.

I still find it ridiculous that Sakho, Lucas, and Skrtel were passed over Liverpool's vice-captaincy.

All three were/are more deserving that James Milner, who got the job five minutes after signing for the club.

Statistically, Skrtel (once again) is Liverpool's most effective defender this season, but Sakho is a close second, and one area in which exceeds the Slovakian is passing accuracy.

Skrtel's passing accuracy is excellent (this season, he's averaging 87%), but Sakho is on 91% this year, and positive forward passing out of defence is a very effective feature of his game.

It's debatable whether Sakho will stay at the club in the long-term, though. Every Liverpool manager going back to Bill Shankly has signed new central defenders, and Klopp will probably do the same at some point.

I'd rather have Sakho, though, than perpetual sicknotes like Hummels, and Subotic, both of whom are currently linked with a move to Anfield.

Author: Jaimie K


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