Former Chelsea and French defender Frank Leboeuf have revealed that he has received death threats and abuses online after claiming that Trent Alexander-Arnold’s defense is at a championship level.
Frank Leboeuf said last month via Journal du Dimanche: “Look at Trent Alexander-Arnold. I love the guy and his offensive qualities. But defensively, he’s Championship level,” Leboeuf told. “Only [Jurgen] Klopp’s system works for him. When it doesn’t work as well as it has this season, all you see is his defensive shortcomings.”
The 54-year-old has come back to clarify his statement, saying via Fair Betting Sites: “I want to go back to why I supposedly said that. First, I said worse, I said “not even Championship level”. But it’s not what I actually said.
“I’m very upset with the English media who took half of what I said and ran with it. I said, “Trent Alexander-Arnold I love the guy”. I love his spirit, his mentality, and what he brings offensively. Because it’s only fair that if you criticize him defensively that you compliment his attack threat.
“Previously as a full-back your priority was to defend well but that is not the case in 2022. We started to see that with the likes of Roberto Carlos, Marcelo, and Cafu.
“But the headline that TAA is a Championship level player is wrong, I never said that and would never be disrespectful to him like that.
“I wasn’t the best defender in the world but I had more knowledge about defending than TAA has because TAA has nothing. He knows nothing about defending because it’s not the idea of his position – which is crazy.
“I think Klopp has to help TAA out. Put Gomez behind him or Milner behind him but don’t ask him to defend because he doesn’t know how to do it. It’s not part of his computer.
“TAA’s computer says “no I’m not interested in defending”. He doesn’t even know what to do but what he can do is provide fantastic crosses or long-range passes to the front line and because that’s where his real quality lies.
“These comments I made about TAA being taken out of context have seen me labeled as a racist and I’ve also received death threats over social media and I hate that. It’s totally unjustified because it was not a personal attack on TAA.
“Yes, I criticized his defensive ability but as part of my analysis I also praised him highly.”
Trent Alexander-Arnold has come under heavy criticism this season for his poor defensive contribution.
He was dropped from England National Team Squad to face Germany in the Nations League last month. Gareth Southgate opted for Reece James and Kieran Tripper because of their defensive contribution.