What a signing Diogo Jota has turned out to be for Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp. When the club sealed the 42 million pounds transfer for the Portugal international, few would have expected such an impact.
Since the 2-2 Merseyside derby draw with Everton, Klopp’s side have gone on a five-match win streak with Jota scoring in each of the last four matches.
Midtjylland | Jota ⚽️ Salah ⚽️
West Ham | Salah ⚽️ Jota ⚽️
Boss 👌 pic.twitter.com/0f7moq937D
— Liverpool FC (@LFC) November 1, 2020
Jota scores = Liverpool win
Liverpool began this run by edging out Dutch giants Ajax 1-0 in the Champions League. This was then followed by a tight 2-1 triumph at Anfield against Chris Wilder’s Sheffield United with Jota scoring the decisive winner.
Danish champions FC Midtjylland then rolled up to Anfield, only for second half strikes from Jota and Mohamed Salah enough to see off Brian Priske’s side.
Again, Liverpool dug deep after falling behind to David Moyes’ West Ham United as a Salah penalty and an 85th minute winner from Jota sealed another 2-1 triumph and took Liverpool back to the Premier League summit.
On Tuesday, Klopp’s men went to highly rated Italian outfit Atalanta, the highest scorers in last season’s Serie A, only to completely outclass them as Jota scored a sublime hat-trick in a thumping 5-0 win at the Gewiss Stadium.
As you can clearly see, the symmetry of Jota’s hot form has coincided with Liverpool topping both their Champions League group and the Premier League table.
Sheffield United ⚽️
West Ham ⚽️
Not a bad week for Diogo 🤩 pic.twitter.com/BlWXVCwVfE
— Liverpool FC (@LFC) October 31, 2020
This has clearly put Liverpool back on track after they were winless in three games in all competitions at one stage, and Klopp will be delighted that his two main objectives are looking peachy once again.
But will Jota continue his rich vein of form?
I would definitely hope so and its certainly possible.
Superb, @DiogoJota18 👌⚽️ pic.twitter.com/YZD09aGfbL
— Liverpool FC (@LFC) November 4, 2020
The Portugal international is full of confidence and has started his Anfield career superbly so the indications are that he will have a fantastic first season under Klopp.
His hat-trick against Atalanta in the mid-week was the stuff of dreams.
Of course, he may drift out of form at some point but this normal for every player.
My colleague Matthew Hardiker, wrote on Friday about the dilemma facing Klopp of whether to choose out of form Bobby Firmino or free scoring Jota for the titanic clash against Manchester City.
J ⚽️ T A 🤩 pic.twitter.com/1vf2fdAQNi
— Liverpool FC (@LFC) October 31, 2020
I would start Jota simply because he is the better player at the moment. Although Firmino has scored some decisive goals against City in the past, so I wouldn’t be surprised if he came off the bench and made an impact.
Local lads continue to shine
With injuries to the likes of Virgil van Dijk and Fabinho, others have had to step in. Step forward Nat Philipps who delivered a man of the match performance in the 2-1 win against West Ham.
Sky Sports pundit and former Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher, Klopp and fans alike have all praised the centre half who nearly left on loan back in the summer.
Next man up 👏👏👏 pic.twitter.com/l9pIy9YzkR
— Liverpool FC USA (@LFCUSA) October 31, 2020
After being at Bundesliga side Stuttgart last season, it looked likely that another loan spell was on the horizon. However, Philipps staying at Anfield has been Klopp’s gain.
Another player who has impressed is centre-half Rhys Williams, who started against Atalanta in midweek and played tremendously well.
This was another pleasing performance for Klopp who continues to get the most out of his players.
And finally, Curtis Jones. The homegrown midfielder has surprisingly started most of this season’s fixtures of late and it’s safe to say he’s repaid the faith shown in him by the manager.
By working on his defensive game, as well as his attacking instincts, he could be some player for Liverpool in the future.
And although not a local lad, Switzerland’s Xherdan Shaqiri, who many had tipped to leave Anfield in the summer, has been playing brilliantly lately.
The Swiss’ through ball for Jota’s winner against West Ham was pure class.
I for one remember how well he played in the first few months of his Anfield career in the 2018-19 season, so I really hope he continues to get more chances to impress.
Challenge of City
Pep Guardiola’s side form has been mixed to say the least. Surprising draws with the likes of Leeds United and West Ham has seen them drop points. However, they are on a three-match win streak including two Champions League wins to put them top of Group C.
They lie 12th in the league with a game in hand and although they have had injury problems, and haven’t quite got going, they will be a threat at the Etihad.
Last time Liverpool visited they lost 4-0 back in July after suffering from a title winning hangover.
With this in mind you would expect things to be different but if this Premier League season is anything to go by, anything can happen.
I don’t like betting against Liverpool but I have a bad feeling that City will nick this 2-1.
There is no real pressure on the Manchester outfit and they seem to play better when they have nothing to lose.
Although my hope is that Klopp’s side can pull off another victory. If they are to do this, Jota will need to hit the straps once again to keep up his mesmerising run of form.