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Razor backs Reds to secure smooth passage to Wembley
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Mitchell Fretton
Jurgen Klopp is in pole position to lead Liverpool to more silverware
Jurgen Klopp is in pole position to lead Liverpool to more silverware

Neil Ruddock is confident former side Liverpool will edge past Fulham tonight in the second leg of their Carabao Cup semi-final.

The Reds lead 2-1 on aggregate but must finish the job at Craven Cottage to set up a replay of the 2022 showpiece against Chelsea.

Jurgen Klopp will be without several key players — including Mohamed Salah, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Dominik Szoboszlai — but Ruddock believes the German can mastermind safe passage to Wembley.

Speaking to LiveScore, he said: "I think Liverpool will just get through, it's going to be a long night. 

"When you look at Klopp and Pep Guardiola, they like to sign players that can play in more than one position. 

"Joe Gomez is the first name that pops up. I've been to Liverpool six times this season and seen him play four different positions along the back four.

"Even players like Diogo Jota can play in more than one, so I think in the back of his mind Klopp signs players he knows he can use in other positions — and that's what good managers do.

"It means they fit in well when you lose your top players."

The new normal

Liverpool have to cope without talisman Salah, now sidelined with an injury sustained at the Africa Cup of Nations with Egypt, and they may have had a glimpse of what life could be like without him next season.

The attacker, 31, continues to be linked with a move away from Anfield and 1995 League Cup winner Ruddock admits that while Klopp may not want to lose him, Reds fans know the club is in safe hands.

He added: "Klopp will be the first person to say he doesn't want Salah to go but it's one of those where you have to consider how long is he going to score 20 goals a season? How long are you going to get over £100million for him?

Mohamed Salah is currently out of action
Mohamed Salah is currently out of action

"Liverpool fans will be confident and feel safe in the sense that if he does go, they have players that are going to step up.

"It would surprise me if they go out and spend £100m on a player — they trust in Klopp to find the right man.

"With the knowledge he has got I am sure they will have a replacement ready when the time comes."

Defensive duties

Neil Ruddock is backing Liverpool to take the fight to Fulham
Neil Ruddock is backing Liverpool to take the fight to Fulham

Liverpool boast the best defensive record in the Premier League this season, conceding just 18 times in 21 matches.

And the former centre-back, who goes by the nickname Razor, has been impressed with how the backline has fared — in particular captain Virgin van Dijk — despite the constant injuries.

He said: "The defence has been so impressive because of the number of changes there have been and players playing out of position, so it's been tremendous really.

"I think the most important partnership for a football club is the two centre-halves because they have the whole team in front of them, they have the goalkeeper behind them and they have to trust everybody.

"I think Van Dijk is one of the best in the world. Sometimes he worries me because he looks like he's taking it easy or not running as hard as he can but that's just the way he plays. He always gets there and reads the game tremendously.

"If he was put up for sale every club in the world would want him, so that shows he is a world-class defender."

Neil Ruddock was speaking to LiveScore on behalf of


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