Trent Alexander-Arnold is having to adapt without Virgil van Dijk at Liverpool which will take time explains Micah Richards.
The Liverpool right-back has been in the spotlight this week following his England snub.
Gareth Southgate axed him from the Three Lions squad which has cast doubt over his place at this summer’s Euros.
Alexander-Arnold, by his own high standards, has endured a difficult campaign.
Defending has long been seen as his weakness and that has further been highlighted by the absence of Van Dijk.
The Dutchman’s class at the back has allowed Alexander-Arnold to showcase his attacking quality in recent years.
But this term, with Van Dijk injured, the Reds right-back hasn’t had that luxury and has suffered as a result.
Richards said on Sky Sports: “Its difficult because when you’ve got Virgil van Dijk there Liverpool play so high, you’re always going to leave gaps behind you.
“And when you’ve got Van Dijk and the pace of Gomez you can mop that up. So he’s having to change his game to what he is used to and that can take time.
“You see Fabinho back in there, it gives him the license to go forward again and we’re seeing the best of Trent.”
Alexander-Arnold played his part as Liverpool saw off Arsenal 3-0 on Saturday night.
It was the perfect response from the 22-year-old as his cross laid on Diogo Jota to open the scoring.
Jurgen Klopp, who has vocally backed his right-back, hailed his efforts at the Emirates, but refused to be drawn on a clash with Southgate.
He said: “Then we scored these wonderful goals and Trent Alexander-Arnold showed his class, again.
“I don’t want to make another discussion about Trent or stuff like that. I said it was Gareth [Southgate’s] decision.
“He is blessed with the choice he has in that position especially but Trent is in a good shape.
“If somebody says he is not then I have to say he is wrong, that is all. I am not responsible for his decisions.”