The Reds legend has welcomed the arrival of a Portuguese forward at Anfield, while Thiago Alcantara is also being backed to shine in England
Liverpool made “excellent signings” in snapping up Thiago Alcantara and Diogo Jota, says John Barnes, with the latter considered a more reliable option than Divock Origi and Xherdan Shaqiri.
Jurgen Klopp moved to add more creativity and firepower to his ranks during the summer transfer window.
Greek left-back Kostas Tsimikas was also acquired, but he will be filling back-up duties behind Andy Robertson.
Thiago and Jota will, when fully fit and firing, expect to see more minutes given the obvious qualities that they bring to the table.
Barnes expects both to make a telling contribution to the cause of the defending Premier League champions, with “something completely different” snapped up by Klopp in a congested marketplace.
“They are two excellent signings,” the Reds legend told the Liverpool Echo. “They are both players who can come into the first team for an extended period of time.
“Thiago in particular, as he gives the midfield something completely different.
“When Chelsea went down to 10 men, it became immediately obvious Thiago would be the most important player as Liverpool would need creativity from a deeper midfield position.
“Thiago gives Klopp a quality option that can help maintain a level of performance in midfield. There perhaps hasn’t been that previously.
“Jota isn’t necessarily going to come in and take over from any of the front three. But I think Klopp can already rely on him more than Divock Origi or Xherdan Shaqiri for a longer period of time.”
While important boxes have been ticked going forward, Liverpool are once again having to contend with an injury-enforced absence for first-choice goalkeeper Alisson.
Adrian is having to provide cover between the sticks, but Barnes believes the Reds – who have looked uncharacteristically fragile ay the back this season – need to avoid wasting important energy on worrying about who is not available.
He added: “The fact he’s [Alisson] not there, it doesn’t mean Adrian is a bad goalkeeper. It just means the defence aren’t as secure playing in front of Adrian compared to Alisson.
“Look at when Joe Gomez or Joel Matip have played alongside Virgil van Dijk. They are often much better than when they were alongside Dejan Lovren. Gomez or Matip are still the same player, but they feel more comfortable around a better player.
“That is something Jurgen Klopp will be telling his players – to forget about the fact Alisson isn’t there because they just have to get on with it.”