Summer Signing Could Be Liverpool’s Key Man Against Bayern Munich

It may have taken summer signing Fabinho a bit of time settling in at Liverpool but the Brazilian has since shown us that he has the qualities needed to make it at Anfield.

The former AS Monaco man has now made seventeen Premier League appearances and a further four outings in the Champions League.

The Brazil international has played mainly in the holding midfield role and he’s proved previously that he can be a very efficient at right-back.

Tomorrow night the twenty-five year old could be pitched in as a makeshift centre-back with Virgil van Dijk suspended and Joe Gomez definitely out injured. If Fabinho is to start in the backline then it will be because Dejan Lovren hasn’t been passed fit.

Fabinho has played as a centre-half before this term, helping The Reds keep a clean-sheet in their Premier League victory over Brighton & Hove Albion.

It will be a tougher prospect for the midfielder to play in central defence up against Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich tomorrow night.

Liverpool manager Jugen Klopp explained that his whole team, including Fabinho, could be in for a tough night (Source – Daily Mail):

‘Fabinho? In the Champions League, against Bayern Munich, it is not an easy job but it makes sense, it depends all about how we defend in general. 

‘There will be a lot of moments where we have to defend. We have worked on that, we respect the quality of Bayern Munich a lot.’ 

Bayern are currently in second place in Germany’s top flight. They’ve won five out of their last six games and have a top marksman in Polish striker Robert Lewandowski. He’s scored thirteen goals in twenty-one league games.

Lewandowski can bully established centre-backs and only needs a sniff of a chance to get onto the scoresheet.

If Liverpool are going to beat Munich then they will have to stop the Germans from scoring. A lot of emphasis when trying to do that will be played on Joel Matip and his defensive partner.

Fabinho does have the attributes to do well in there.

The summer signing can be impressive in the air. Last term at Monaco, he’d win an average of 3.2 headers per Champions League appearance.

For The Reds this season, Fabinho has won around 2 tackles per league game and that goes up to 2.3 successful tackles in Europe (Stats from Whoscored)

A major plus in having the Brazilian at the heart of Liverpool’s defence could be Fabinho’s concentration levels and his ability to adapt and remain disciplined. Croatian centre-half Lovren has suffered from lapses of concentration in big games in the past, while having played consistently in various positions Fabinho has shown us he has the mentality to stick to a task!

Then there’s the twenty-five year old’s passing ability. We know Reds boss Jurgen Klopp likes to build from the back and Fabinho is very efficient with his passes, whether they be long or shot.

If Klopp has to play with a makeshift centre-back, then I’d fully expect him to go for the tried and trusted in midfield. That should see Jordan Henderson, James Milner and Georginio Wijnaldum playing in the engine room, protecting the back four.

If the Premier League title challengers are going to knockout European superpower Bayern Munich, then they’re going to need to have a solid defence display and hope that their fluid attack can put the ball into the back of the net.

Defensively, versatile Fabinho could be the difference maker and he’ll probably need to have a great night to keep Robert Lewandowski quiet.

Here’s hoping we get a thrilling game!

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