Jamie Carragher describes certain Joe Gomez comparisons as "stupidly premature" 2 years ago

Jamie Carragher describes certain Joe Gomez comparisons as "stupidly premature"

Joe Gomez has all the potential in the world and Jamie Carragher has always been one of his biggest fans but the young defender still has so much to prove.

So often we see pressure heaped on young players with comparisons to all-time greats being drawn after a couple of impressive performances.

That pressure can also cause those promising youngsters to crash and burn as they fail to reach the lofty targets that they never asked for.

Gomez is just 21 and while the sky is the limit for the versatile defender, there will be mistakes along the way as he learns his craft.

Supporters need to prepare for errors and allow Gomez to improve at his own pace because he is nowhere near his prime.

Gomez will come up against his toughest challenge of the season to date when he aims to keep Tottenham Hotspur centre-forward Harry Kane quiet on Saturday afternoon.

Liverpool's trip to Spurs could prove pivotal in the Premier League title race and Reds legend, Carragher, is looking forward to seeing how Jurgen Klopp's back four holds up.

"Good as it [Liverpool's defence] has been so far – with respect – they have not come up against a team of Spurs’ quality yet, nor a striker of Harry Kane’s class. He tortured Liverpool in this fixture a year ago, forcing a defensive substitution when Dejan Lovren was withdrawn before half-time," Carragher wrote in his Telegraph column.

"Klopp has changed the back five since, with only Joe Gomez likely to play on Saturday having started a year ago, and fitness and form-permitting the defensive line-up Liverpool have now could remain intact for the next 10 years. That does not mean there is no reason to be cautious.

"Although he played at right-back a year ago, since assuming his favoured position Gomez has been likened to Bobby Moore and Rio Ferdinand. This is stupidly premature, over the top praise. Gomez could become a top player, but to get there he will need to overcome sterner tests than Selhurst Park and the King Power Stadium.

"Klopp will have studied the records. He will know – as a rule – teams do not win the league unless they go through the season having, on average, conceded less than one goal a game. Ideally, you want to concede less than 30 goals over 38 games. Liverpool have not managed that since 2009, when finishing second.

"Last season’s winners Manchester City are lauded for their attacking strength. They won 100 points and scored 106 goals. We should remember they conceded only 27 in the Premier League, too, fewer than any other team.

"A brilliant strikeforce will win plenty of games and admirers, but you cannot win the title without a strong defence."