Garth Crooks isn’t one for making conservative predictions when it comes to the Premier League.
The BBC pundit’s team of the season for 2015/16 was widely mocked for excluding Jamie Vardy and Dele Alli, and he’s now come up with another football clanger to rival it.
After Liverpool’s opening day victory against Arsenal, Crooks made the bold claim that Jurgen Klopp’s men ran the risk of dropping into the Championship this term due to their lack of a left-back.
In his BBC Sport column, Crooks praised the signing of Sadio Mané, but seemingly launched into a one-man hate mission against Alberto Moreno.
“What happened to Liverpool? Last week, I said that if they didn’t replace Alberto Moreno at left-back they would get relegated.”
“If he keeps Alberto Moreno in the team, he can forget the top four – he’ll get relegated,” Crooks wrote.
In this week’s column, Crooks was in full “told you so” mode, slapping himself on the back for his relegation statement, then throwing shade on Moreno’s defensive replacement James Milner.
“What happened to Liverpool? Last week, I said that if they didn’t replace Alberto Moreno at left-back they would get relegated. I make no apology for the exaggerated remark because the point needed to be made,” he wrote.
“However, putting square pegs in round holes or, to be more precise, James Milner in that position does not solve the problem either.”
Crooks might sound like a bit of a first-class plonker with these comments, but it’s worth remembering that Klopp actually flirted with relegation during his final term at Borussia Dortmund before rebounding in the second half of the season and finishing 7th.
Still, we’re struggling to see Liverpool go down just based on having a dodgy left-back.