Ainsley - The lessons Liverpool game taught me

Ten days ago, Ainsley Maitland-Niles had never started a Premier League game.

But the 20-year-old has forced himself into our starting XI recently and has completed the full 90 in each of our last three league games.

His stiffest test so far came against Liverpool on Friday night - and here’s how he found it.

on if he’s ever played in a game like that…
Nah, never before in my life! But it was a great experience being out there and I think we showed real character to come back in the game.

on the game’s rhythm…
English football’s changed a bit - there’s a lot of counter-attacking teams now and there’s a lot of pace going forward. The speed of the game is different and that made it go back and forth a lot. 

on if it was basketball-like…
Yeah, sort of. It was very similar. You’ve got to try and take a grip on those games and keep possession of the ball when you’re winning.

Ainsley Maitland-Niles' recoveries against Liverpool

Ainsley Maitland-Niles' recoveries against Liverpool

on playing against Salah…
I think I did alright. There’s a few things to work on but I’m getting there slowly.

on what he learnt tonight…
I guess it’s just how to deal with those powerful, attacking players that love to score goals and run past you;. It’s a learning curve to play against them and use their weaknesses against them. 

on his overall feeling and if he’s happy…
Not at all. We should have won the game because we were ahead. There was no reason for us to drop points so I’m disappointed with the performance really. 


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