Joe Gomez’s calming influence hailed as Liverpool debutant is “phenomenal”

Liverpool’s defence were made to work hard for their three points against Newcastle, and the centre-back pairing at full time was an unexpected one.

With Virgil van Dijk‘s red card forcing Liverpool down to 10 men in the first half, Joe Gomez replaced Luis Diaz so the Reds could retain a back four.

Later, with Joel Matip tiring after 77 minutes, Jurgen Klopp made the bold decision to bring on Jarell Quansah for his Liverpool debut.

With the help of Alisson in goal, the English centre-back pairing managed to see the game out, securing a famous win at St James’ Park.

After the match, the pair came in for praise from their teammates and manager.

Klopp said: “Joey [Gomez] didn’t play for a while, he did well. Came on, we settled, we played better afterwards to be honest. We were much more controlled, didn’t let them get through really.”

Meanwhile, Andy Robertson told Premier League productions that he thought Gomez “was absolutely outstanding.”

The Scotland captain added: “I thought he came on, in a difficult moment, we were 1-0 down, we just went down to 10 men, the crowd are up and it’s only looking like it’s going one way.

“But Joey calmed us down, if I am honest. He started getting his foot on the ball, started playing his passes. I thought he was tremendous; I thought he was exceptional.”

Meanwhile, the boss told BBC Sport: “[Quansah] is a real talent. He played two really good passes, super-important passes, I would say.

“Defensively we needed luck a little bit, we were a bit too deep, a bit too passive. They could shoot but we have Alisson. There were, obviously, besides the result a few nice stories and bringing Quansah on is one of them.”

Trent Alexander-Arnold echoed Klopp’s sentiments, telling Sky Sports: “The lads that came on, outstanding.

NEWCASTLE-UPON-TYNE, ENGLAND - Sunday, August 27, 2023: Liverpool's Jarell Quansah during the FA Premier League match between Newcastle United FC and Liverpool FC at St James' Park. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Jarell Quansah, absolutely phenomenal in his first game for us. Coming on in an atmosphere and an environment like this is extraordinary and, to hold his own in the way he’s performed, is outstanding.”

Some have suggested that bringing the 20-year-old on was a move from Klopp to show his employers they need to sign a defender.

Whatever the case, it was a strong start from Quansah, who spent the second half of last season on loan at Bristol Rovers, playing under Joey Barton.

Joe Gomez, we know all about. If he can get back to his best, he could be a real asset this season.