Jurgen Klopp explains theory behind Liverpool’s centre-back rotation
Jurgen Klopp has explained why he has been rotating Nat Phillips and Rhys Williams in the Liverpool defence amid the club's ongoing injury crisis.
Both players have been called into action again in recent matches after Joel Matip was ruled out for up to three weeks with a groin injury.
Williams came on for Matip in the draw with West Brom, while Phillips started the match against Newcastle.
Klopp has previously opted to use Williams in Champions League fixtures, due to Phillips being ineligible in Europe, but he is planning to continue with his rotation despite their being no continental ties until February.
And the Reds' boss has revealed he is doing so purely to keep both players as match ready as possible as a precautionary measure.
Asked about his defensive options, Klopp said: "I really like Nat. He’s just a completely clear boy, knows about his abilities and is using it and is just doing the job.
"He helped us a lot [against Newcastle] and it was clear he would play because we have three centre-halves in the moment.
"If Rhys would have played again then Nat wouldn’t have played for 5-6 weeks which makes no sense because he needs rhythm as well.
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It's been an extremely interesting start to the season for Jurgen Klopp's men.
They got their title defence off to a shaky start as they edged out a seven-goal thriller against Leeds, before going on to conceded seven in a hammering by Aston Villa.
Virgil van Dijk's season was ended by injury in the 2-2 draw at Everton, leaving the title favourites looking far less secure at the back – especially with Alisson's injury worries too.
But there's no slowing down in what is going to be a busy campaign – with Klopp ensuring his men continue at full pace as they bid for more title glory.
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"So we have to think a lot about these kinds of things."
Klopp's comments suggest Williams will be reinstated in Liverpool's back four for the trip to Southampton on Monday, as well as the FA Cup clash against Aston Villa, with Klopp hopeful of Matip's return for the crunch league clash with Man Utd.
And it seems Klopp is not desperate to bring in any new faces to help ease the burden, admitting he is unsure if Liverpool will sign anyone in January.
Should Liverpool sign a centre-back in January? Have your say below.
“We have solutions in the squad and if we can or if we will do something in the window, I don’t know,” Klopp said.
“It’s a very difficult transfer window as you can imagine. Not a lot of clubs have ‘real’ money. Some clubs don’t have money but don’t need money as well, so that’s the situation.
“Doing the right thing would make sense but doing something makes no sense and so far, as long as we are in the situation we are, we have to deal with it."
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