A quick 2020/21 recap
Off the back of another long and especially tough season, Alisson is finally able to have a few weeks of rest before re-joining up with the squad for pre-season.
The 2020/21 season felt like an extremely disruptive season for Alisson both on the pitch with injuries to himself and our senior centre-backs as well as off the field, with the sad passing of his father.
However, this was not entirely reflected in the statistics. Alisson still managed to play 42 games in all competitions last season (33 in the Premier League) whilst making the most amount of saves in any of his Premier League campaigns (84).
Moreover, who can forget the best moment of the season, his 95th minute winner against West Brom, an utterly crucial goal in our top four charge.
The 2021/22 expectation
1. A new contract
First up, a new contract.
It has been widely reported that Alisson is set for a contract extension this summer and these reports have only intensified in recent days.
Just days ago, universally respected journalist Fabrizio Romano spoke of the matter on the Here We Go Podcast, saying that Liverpool are ‘really progressing with talks with Alisson over a new contract’.
Should the deal be completed, it would confirm Alisson’s position as Jurgen Klopp’s number one for the wider future. Liverpool have not had a long-term number one since the departure of Pepe Reina.
The Alisson renewal will establish a much-needed sense of security and comfort to the squad and fanbase.
Furthermore, tying down the world’s best goalkeeper to a new contract will only emphasise the status of Liverpool FC in the current footballing world as one of biggest and best team’s around.
2. A new focus and hunger for success
Moving towards footballing matters, Alisson will be more determined than ever to play his best football this coming season.
Since 2018, he had been the undeniable number one goalkeeper for Brazil, but this all changed at the 2021 Copa América when Manchester City’s Ederson was handed the goalkeeping jersey for the crucial knock out games.
Having won the Premier League golden glove and earning even more plaudits for his outstanding ball playing ability it is understandable why Tite (Brazil's head coach) opted in favour of Ederson.
Yet, with the 2022 World Cup not far away, Alisson will want to reclaim his status as Brazil’s number one goalkeeper in the hope that he can actively contribute to his country’s success instead of willing it on from the bench.
With Liverpool, the motivation remains the same for Alisson.
We can all agree that a third-place finish in the league last year was a fantastic result in terms of damage limitation.
Moreover, with the return to fitness of senior centre-backs Virgil van Dijk, Joe Gomez, Joel Matip and the exciting new signing of Ibrahima Konate, Alisson will have an experienced set of defenders that he can once again foster a strong understanding with.
This is incredibly important to a goalkeeper when looking to engage in their own positional and communicative play, as such scenarios will only improve if the muscle memory and patterns of play between the goalkeeper and centre-backs become constant.
Ultimately, this allows for less confusion and minimises the risk of a mistake in the most precarious third of the pitch.
Hence, I expect Alisson to return to his full ‘I’m going to flick this ball over a striker’s head’ mojo and nerve-easing goalkeeping that earnt him back-to-back Fifa FIFPro World11 appearances in 2019 and 2020.
He will be a vital cog in the Liverpool FC machine that has the ambition to return swiftly to the top of the English and European game in the 2021/22 season.
Fans should expect Alisson to feature in all Premier League and Champions League games barring injury or a sudden drop in form.
A new contract, a well-deserved break, renewed desire and the return of familiar faces ahead of him will set Alisson Becker in good stead when aiming to become the undisputed best goalkeeper in world football once more.