Aston Villa suffered a 2-1 defeat to Liverpool on Tuesday evening after throwing away a 1-0 lead and Steven Gerrard said Marvelous Nakamba coming off in the second half may have contributed.

The 28-year-old was replaced by Carney Chukwuemeka after the hour mark with the score at 1-1, but Liverpool scored minutes later to take the lead. Douglas Luiz changed to a defensive-midfield role but lost the ball in the build up to the winner and was criticised by his manager.

Gerrard said to Birmingham Live after the game: “Douglas went into the middle and, obviously, the ball got stolen off him. Maybe with Marv that might not have happened.” But the 41-year-old had another option to sit in front of the defence that he ignored – Morgan Sanson.

Rather than a like-for-like replacement, Gerrard brought on the talented-but-inexperienced Chukwuemeka and moved Luiz into a role he’s not comfortable in. Wouldn’t it have made more sense to swap Nakamba for Sanson and allow Luiz to stay alongside John McGinn?

The fact Gerrard overlooked the 27-year-old and has only handed him one Premier League appearance for two months shows he doesn’t trust him. Sanson’s performances in training drew praise from the Villa boss in March, but that hasn’t translated with opportunities on the pitch.

The uncapped Frenchman is not providing cover for Nakamba, he’s the last resort so it’s time to go.

In other news, injury to Ollie Watkins could see Emi Buendia start v Crystal Palace