Liverpool’s Brendan Rodgers explains decision to haul off Javier Manquillo

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers explains decision to substitute Javier Manquillo after 20 minutes at Upton Park

The Sport Review staff
By The Sport Review staff

Brendan Rodgers has explained his decision to haul off Javier Manquillo after a disastrous opening 20 minutes at Upton Park on Saturday.

The Reds manager opted to substitute the on-loan Atletico Madrid right-back after the Hammers stormed into an early 2-0 lead, with Manquillo struggling to come to terms with West Ham star Enner Valencia.

Manquillo, who has been quietly impressive since moving to Anfield on a two-year deal in August, was replaced by Mamadou Sakho as Rodgers attempted to reinforce his creaking Liverpool defence.

Liverpool went on to lose 3-1 in east London, and Rodgers revealed that he has spoken to the 19-year-old defender to reassure Manquillo that his substitution was merely tactical.

Rodgers said: “I spoke to him yesterday – it was purely a tactical decision. The boy has been fantastic since he came in. He’s fine.

“I felt that at 2-0 after 20 minutes, we were struggling in the game. I didn’t want to wait to make a change.

“We went to three centre-halves and changed to 3-5-2, just to give West Ham something else to think about. We got a goal, back to 2-1, but couldn’t find the finishing touch to get anything else.”

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