An injury-stricken Liverpool team defeated Spurs in a top of the table clash on Wednesday as goals from Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino helped the defending champions go three points clear of their opponents on the night.
Jurgen Klopp would have a lot of positives to take from a successful night: arguably the biggest of them being a coming-of-age performance from talented academy graduate Curtis Jones.
The English youngster started in the Liverpool midfield in the absence of summer signing Thiago Alcantara, against an almost watertight Spurs midfield that has provided next to no space in midfield to their opponents of late.
A precocious performance was required from the 19-year-old coming up against Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg: Spurs’ industrious summer signing in the heart of their midfield and a player that personifies his manager José Mourinho on the pitch to the fullest.
Jones delivered as Klopp hoped for him to: he came of age, playing with wonderful control, swift feet and calmness too. Jones had taken 129 touches, completed 94% of his passes, taken three shots at goal, won four headers, made four interceptions and glided about with a rare sense of grace.
But the one moment that truly defined Jones’ night was when he took on Harry Kane and Lucas Moura with the ball at his feet: a moment of lazy, showboating brilliance at the big stage that a certain Zinédine Zidane would be proud of.
Special, @curtisjr_10 🤩💫 pic.twitter.com/DUX8zIt9A3— Liverpool FC (@LFC) December 18, 2020
Jones kept possession so adeptly that one would guess that he has been playing for years in the top flight: as opposed to a 19-year-old who would barely get to feature in a game of such huge stature if not for all the injuries troubling the squad.
The Liverpool born and bred Jones did everything that his manager wanted him to do and more: and it is safe to say that Liverpool fans will be delighted to see him do the same for his boyhood club for years to come in the future.