Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp will work “100 per cent” on finding the next Trent Alexander-Arnold or Andrew Robertson and has high hopes for “real prospect” Neco Williams.
The Reds’ star full-backs have once again been providers-in-chief for the Premier League champions, with both providing 10-plus top-flight assists for the second straight season.
With the coronavirus pandemic causing a three-month suspension before this season resumed inJune, there will only be a short break before the next Premier League campaignstarts on September 12.
Klopp has no doubt Robertson and Alexander-Arnold can fire on all cylinders despite a short break, but says Williams has shown he can be one alternative option.
“We think constantly about our situation and we know we need to find solutions for that [the quick turnaround between seasons] but that’s how it is,” Klopp said.
“With Neco Williams we have a real prospect there in the team already, it’s really nice to have.
“We will have other solutions for those problems but again finding the next Trent, the next Robbo is difficult but maybe possible and we will work on that 100 per cent.”
Klopp also spoke about the challenges of squad building and says it is important not to stockpile players, even if having recognised cover in every position provides comfort.
Losing goalkeeper Alisson early this season was provided as a specific example, but the German bosssays no team can fully prepare for losing players to injuries.
“If it’s down to luck, it [losing Alisson] wasn’t lucky that day – we all want to be prepared for these situations but we aren’t, nobody is really,” he added.
“It always hits the wrong player if you want. If you think you are okay in this department where you think you have alternatives then it hits somebody in a different department where I don’t have enough alternatives and you have to get creative immediately.
“So, we build a squad and everybody feels he is needed. That means sometimes we can be a little bit short with that one ‘A’ solution but we always have a solution and as long as we have that we have to work with that.
“For a club like us it’s not possible on the bench to have like 20 world-class players, we have to perform on a world-class level and that’s possible on different line-ups and all our players have all the potential to be world-class but sometimes they don’t play often enough they can show that.
“Squad building is pretty tricky and a big challenge every year, but the answer is never to have more players than you need actually, that is not the answer.
“It feels comfortable for a moment but then over the whole year you have different problems.
“That’s why it’s difficult to decide the right number or the right alternatives, but that’s the job to do, so far we’ve done okay, hopefully it will stay like this.”