Football News

Jamie Carragher: Why Liverpool would be “mad” to sign Matthijs de Ligt

By Chris Smith

Published: 19:46, 26 May 2019

Jamie Carragher believes Liverpool would be ‘mad’ to sign Matthijs de Ligt or any other centre-back, such has been the form of Joe Gomez and Joel Matip.

Gomez partnered the domineering Virgil van Dijk during the first half of the season but an ankle injury sustained during a 3-1 win over Burnley in December saw Matip step in alongside the Dutchman.

Should Liverpool sign De Ligt? Five key things to know…

  1. No team conceded fewer goals than Liverpool’s 22 during the 2018/19 Premier League season.
  2. Van Dijk was involved in a league-high 20 clean sheets.
  3. Matip (9) and Gomez (7) were involved in a further 16 combined.
  4. Carragher believes Liverpool would be ‘mad’ to sign another centre-back thanks to their form.
  5. But he did admit Dejan Lovren’s injury problems could change that, with the Reds linked with De Ligt.

Liverpool’s defensive strength never waned, with the Reds conceding the fewest goals (22) in the Premier League during 2018/19 – all the while with their other centre-back, Dejan Lovren, out for most of the season.

And Carragher believes the form of Van Dijk’s partners means the Reds don’t need any investment at the heart of their defence, despite being heavily linked with Ajax captain and Eredivisie winner, De Ligt.

“The form Matip’s been in, he’s been brilliant,” former Reds defender Carragher told The Anfield Wrap.

“At one stage three months ago I was thinking, ‘We need to buy a centre-back.’

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“You couldn’t trust [Dejan] Lovren or Gomez fitness-wise and Matip was the fourth choice and you’re thinking, ‘Is he good enough?’

“But I think you’d be mad now to sign one.”

Carragher addresses Lovren’s injury problems

Although he wouldn’t want to see another centre-back come into Anfield with Liverpool’s current situation, Carragher did admit Lovren’s horrendous injury problems could change that, with the Croatian missing no fewer than 13 games due to injury during 2018/19.

On the prospect of Liverpool signing another centre-back, Carragher added: “Maybe if Lovren went, I don’t know his contract situation.

“He’s far too injury prone for me so if someone made a good offer and you could buy someone without breaking the bank [you should sell him], because you’ve got Gomez there who was outstanding at the start of the season, you give him one more chance as well.

“Unfortunately for him [Lovren] he gets a lot of injuries and you can’t afford to have players in your squad who get injured all the time.

“It’s just not good. In Matip and Gomez we’ve got two excellent partners for big Virg.”