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Joe Gomez explains “challenge” of playing left-back – and battles with Bukayo Saka

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Joe Gomez insists Liverpool will not get giddy at the prospect of another potential quadruple tilt, but has acknowledged there is a fire in the squad to achieve this season.

The Premier League leaders continue to battle on four fronts after they progressed into the FA Cup fourth round on Sunday with a 2-0 win at Arsenal.

Next on the agenda for Jurgen Klopp‘s team is Wednesday’s Carabao Cup semi-final first leg at home to Fulham, but Gomez says there is no prospect of complacency creeping in.

He said: “We don’t want to get giddy. We’re all just full of desire and want to make the best out of the season.

“All we can do is take it one game at a time. I know it’s a cliche, but there’s desire and we have a platform to build on.

“We can’t take that for granted, as we know with last season it’s not always plain-sailing and we went through rough patches but we built from it and learnt from it. So, we have to keep at it and see where it takes us.”

READ: How Gomez stopped Saka in his tracks – 4 dribbles attempted, 0 successful

Gomez only made 31 appearances in all competitions for Liverpool last season, but is already up to 26 this term and has recently been used at left-back with Andy Robertson absent.

While the unorthodox position has been a challenge for the London-born defender, he relished another battle with Bukayo Saka and hailed a big team effort at the Emirates.

“He’s a top player, a direct winger. It’s not often the case these days but he’s one that will stay wide to pick up the ball and drive at you. It was tough. I knew it was going to be having played him so recently but yeah, great team performance, we all dug deep,” Gomez added.

“It’s different at left-back! It’s been a challenge to adapt. Small, minor differences that maybe aren’t noted, maybe how you receive the ball and so on.

“But people at the club know me now, they know I will give my all. I’ve been here long enough now but I’m grateful to play for the club.”

LONDON, ENGLAND - Sunday, January 7, 2024: Liverpool's Trent Alexander-Arnold celebrates their side's openimg goal during the FA Cup 3rd Round match between Arsenal FC and Liverpool FC at the Emirates Stadium. (Photo by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Liverpool were on the ropes for a long period in the capital before Trent Alexander-Arnold‘s free-kick produced Jakub Kiwior’s own goal and a late Luis Diaz strike made it four wins in five for Klopp’s men.

The victory was all the more impressive considering the club’s lengthy list of absentees with captain Virgil van Dijk ill, while Mohamed Salah is away at the Africa Cup of Nations.

Nevertheless, Gomez hailed the togetherness of the squad and backed them to take another step towards silverware in this week’s cup tie with Fulham at Anfield.

“There’s definitely a good bond in the team. There’s definitely a freshness and fire about the team,” he added.

LONDON, ENGLAND - Saturday, December 9, 2023: Liverpool's Joe Gomez during the FA Premier League match between Crystal Palace FC and Liverpool FC at Selhurst Park. Liverpool won 2-1. (Photo by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

“We’re not over-analysing who we lost and who we don’t have. We’ve got top players who we’ve missed this year.

Thiago, Robbo, Kostas, Mo going, but the gaffer keeps reiterating we can all do a job defensively and we can all defend.

“It means we don’t have to worry about who’s missing. We have to keep that mentality.

“We’ve got a bit more of a spring in our step. Another big game on Wednesday. We want to get to another final, [it’s] over two legs but we’ll go for it.”