Alexander-Arnold lauds ‘incredible’ Liverpool competitor Bradley

Trent Alexander-Arnold has heaped praise on his fellow Liverpool right-back Conor Bradley for making a big impression while he was out injured.

Alexander-Arnold suffered a knee injury during Liverpool’s 2-0 FA Cup win over Arsenal in early January, causing him to spend three weeks on the sidelines and enabling Bradley to enjoy his first sustained run in the Reds’ first team.

Bradley impressed when promoted to a starting role, scoring his first Liverpool goal and providing two assists in a crushing 4-1 win over Chelsea at Anfield.

That led the 20-year-old to be nominated for the Premier League’s Player of the Month award for January, though he then missed last week’s 3-1 defeat to Arsenal after the death of his father.

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Alexander-Arnold returned to the Liverpool lineup for that game, but he knows he now faces real competition from a fellow academy graduate in Bradley.

“He’s a credit to himself with all the hard work he has put in,” Alexander-Arnold told the club’s media channels of Bradley. “I think the way he stepped up and performed was incredible.

“We see it day in and day out in training, how good he is and how good the rest of the young lads are. It’s a very, very good time for the academy. It’s very good to see.”

Asked if he saw similarities between his rise through the ranks and that of Bradley, Alexander-Arnold said: “Somewhat. I think it’s hard to even think and compare yourself because you never know how good you actually are and you just want to keep playing.

“I never really thought about it back then. You’re just focused on breaking into the team and performing and being a part of the first team.

“You’re so focused on that, you don’t have time to think about anything else. It’s a credit to the work they do at the academy to prepare the lads to come up here and settle in straight away.”

Alexander-Arnold was eased back into the fold with substitute appearances against Chelsea and Norwich City before starting at the Emirates Stadium last time out.

His return comes at a pivotal time for Liverpool, who remain in the hunt for four major trophies but have seen their lead at the Premier League summit cut to just two points.

“It’s good to be back,” he added. “It’s always a frustrating time when you’re out, you’re just so envious of not being able to play.

“It’s good to be back in and around the lads, being around it, travelling, it feels good to be back out there.”

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