What a goal. Curling the ball with the outside of his right-foot, off the underside of the bar and in. Last night, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain once again scored a beauty, giving the Champions League holders a bit of breathing space in Belgium. However, as we look to the future, could the English midfielder be the difference in Liverpool’s title charge?

24 April 2018, an innocent challenge on Roma’s Alexander Kolarov changed his who season and unfortunately, the next. His world came crashing down, sustaining a fair amount of knee damage, which as a result ruled him out of not one but two Champions League finals and the worst thing was, he didn’t even know it yet.

2017/18 had already been a special year for the 26-year-old, signing for the Reds at a measly £35 million, which I think we can all agree is a steal. He was a favourite under Klopp when he first linked up with the German, playing 46 times in all competitions until his injury in April, scoring five goals with eight assists, including that wonder strike against Manchester City to condemn the Champions to their first league defeat.

You could argue that Liverpool didn’t lack anything last season, especially up-front. Claiming their first Champions League title since that night in Istanbul, whilst also pushing Pep Guardiola all the way, claiming the highest points tally in a Premier League season for a team not to lift the title.

However, after hitting eight wins in a row to start the current campaign, Liverpool will be looking to put last season’s league misery aside, as they bid for their first title since the Premier League introduction in 1992, whilst also clinging onto the big ears of the Champions League for dear life.

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His first against Genk was trademark Ox. A right-footed shot from the edge of the box into the bottom corner, almost replicating his goal against Manchester City not two years earlier. This sort of diversity that the Reds play with is the reason they amongst Europe’s elite. Whilst they have Mane and Salah out wide and Firmino in the middle, his driving force from midfield could be the difference. Someone who can pick the ball up on halfway and drive at the opposition, whilst not afraid to try their luck now and again.

His second was, well, exquisite. Nonchalantly arching the ball into the top left-hand corner, leaving Couke in the Genk goal, helpless. Some more outrageous quality, putting him back amongst the Champions League goals in style.

This was breath-taking creativity, adding that little bit extra to Liverpool’s attack. Glimpses of skill of this magnitude show us why Oxlade-Chamberlain could one day be amongst the world’s elite.

This goal was a blow for Genk as everything Felice Mazzu said at half-time went out the window, as a two-goal cushion gave the home side it all to do, especially against the reigning champions.

“It was absolutely a great moment for him, but I would say with Ox his performance was exactly the same as the performance of the team,” Klopp told Sky Sports after the match, hinting that the English midfielder has room for improvement.

An injection of confidence can do a player a world of good and there is nothing like finding the back of the net to get it. Consistency is key, keeping up some good form is clinical, not only for him, with the Euros around the corner but also for Liverpool as Jurgen Klopp’s side aim to get their hands on that Premier League crown.

Image – Paul Dawson under the Creative Commons licence

Quote – https://www.skysports.com/football/news/11669/11843590/liverpool-boss-jurgen-klopp-alex-oxlade-chamberlain-can-still-do-better