How does Diogo Jota compare to Liverpool’s starting trio?
Despite costing nearly twice the amount of Alcantara, Jota’s transfer to Anfield didn’t set the races pulsing. However a lot can change in such a short period of time.
Many wondered where the Portugal international would fit in Jurgen Klopp’s side. Sadio Mane, Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino have long since cemented their places in Klopp’s 4-3-3 formation. Jota, it was believed, would alternate with either Mane or Salah when one needed a respite from the brutally compact schedule of 2020/21.
Jota has taken to life at Anfield like a duck takes to water. He scored within eight minutes on his debut at home to Arsenal, and hasn’t looked back since. Against Atalanta in the Champions League on Tuesday, a difficult night was expected of the reigning Premier League champions in Bergamo.
Jota was having none of it, as he tore the beleaguered La Dea defence to shreds with his frightening pace, scoring a hat-trick by the 54th minute in a comprehensive 5-0 win for The Reds.
So, how is the new signing stacking up against the established trio of Mane, Firmino and Salah so far this season?
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The table makes for interesting reading. Jota has played by far and away the least, but is still second in the scoring charts. Although it must be noted that Jota takes more shots at goal on average compared to Mane, Firmino and Salah.
The season is still in its infancy, but Firmino looks to be the player struggling with form at present, with the 29-year-old struggling for goals and assists despite receiving plenty of playing time.
Will Firmino be the one to make way for Jota on a permanent basis as the season wears on? It’s going to be interesting to see how Klopp interchanges the four.
One thing is certain however, with Jota in such devastating form, it would be churlish to leave the winger on the bench at this stage in the season.