Soccer

Trent Alexander-Arnold accused of struggling with "hype" as key flaw laid bare

Trent Alexander-Arnold has been accused of struggling to deal with the "hype" as his poor season continues.

The Liverpool right-back has become a star for the Merseyside outfit and enjoyed several stellar seasons.

He has helped his boyhood club win the Premier League and the Champions League in recent years.

But his decline has mirrored that of his team this year as he struggles to replicate the form he has shown.

Alexander-Arnold was hailed as among the best right-backs in the world and former Red Steve McMahon believes he may be struggling with such a tag.

Defending has often been cited as his main weakness however and with Virgil van Dijk not providing a foundation at the back his flaws have been exposed.

McMahon told talkSPORT : “He has concerned me most of the season. He’s been fantastic for 18 months or so.

“Maybe the hype has got to him, I’m not too sure, but certainly his performance levels have dropped dramatically whether or not it’s the team’s performance or what.

“I don’t think you can go from a superstar defender to a poor one – he’s turned out to be this season.

“Defending is certainly his weakness. It’s been a double whammy (with Virgil van Dijk being out injured).”

Alexander-Arnold has got 25 assists over the past two seasons, making him a crucial attacking weapon.

This term though he has provided just three assists in 22 outings and he admitted recently his performances have not been at the desired level.

The academy graduate also felt Liverpool had maybe become too accustomed to winning which had affected them.

He told Sky Sports : "Once you get accustomed to winning all the time, which we have been doing in the previous two seasons really, you do get used to the feeling and you start to kind of expect it.

"That's probably the trap that we fell into this season in that we expected to win games because we're good enough, something will happen and we have that quality to find a goal from somewhere, which happened naturally last season and the season before."

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