Steven Gerrard predicted Trent Alexander-Arnold's new midfield role eight years ago when Liverpool star was 16
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Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard predicted that Trent Alexander-Arnold could be utilised in a midfield role at Anfield - when the Reds star was 16.
Alexander-Arnold came through Liverpool's academy, where he started out as a right midfielder before being converted to a right-back.
He made his Reds debut in October 2016, having featured in the previous year's pre-season when Brendan Rodgers was in charge.
But he has played his entire senior career at Anfield under the management of Jurgen Klopp, who helped to develop him into arguably the best attacking right-back in world football.
Although his defensive qualities have come under scrutiny, Alexander-Arnold's ability to carve out attacks for the Reds through his superb passing and crossing abilities have played a key role in Liverpool's success under Klopp.
In the 2022/23 season, however, the 24-year-old has largely been unable to hit the heights of previous campaigns. Before the 2-2 draw against Arsenal at Anfield on April 9, the right-back had two assists to his name in the league.
But Klopp then decided to shift Alexander-Arnold into an inverted wing-back role, which has allowed him to influence Liverpool attacks from a more advanced position in the centre of midfield.
That change has certainly borne fruit, with the Reds star producing a series of starring displays. In his first eight games since the switch, Alexander-Arnold scored one goal and provided six assists. He also earned a recall to Gareth Southgate's England squad for the upcoming Euro 2024 qualifiers against Malta and North Macedonia.
Back in 2015, when Alexander-Arnold was 16 years of age and still over a year away from making his senior debut, Gerrard stated his belief that the right-back could play in a midfield role for Liverpool.
Gerrard on Alexander-Arnold
Gerrard made the prediction in his autobiography, 'My Story', which was released months after his departure from Anfield after a 26-year association with the club.
He said (quotes via Liverpool Echo): "Trent Arnold has a terrific chance of making it as a top professional.
"He's quite leggy but he's got a lovely frame and seems to have all the attributes you need. He has the right attitude and comes from West Derby, home to Melwood.
"So Trent is another Scouser and apparently, just as I tried to be John Barnes and Steve McMahon, he grew up pretending to be me while playing in the Merseyside parks.
"He can play as a number 6, a holding midfielder, but he's versatile and I've seen him fill various positions. I know England are all over him."