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Bilić: “Lovren doesn’t deserve this”

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Dejan Lovren has been under huge criticism recently as he has been unable to perform properly lately – but another Croat, Slaven Bilić, thinks that Lovren deserves better and he stands behind him.

Lovren is a player Bilic knows well, having handed him his international debut in 2009 when he was Croatia boss. And the West Ham manager, whose side host Liverpool on Saturday evening, says the internet trolls should be “ashamed of themselves, according to ESPN. Bilić thinks that Lovren has provided a couple of decent performances so far with Liverpool and there is a huge potential to bounce back for him.

The former Besiktas coach shared his thoughts as he claimed: “Fortunately that is a minority of people. Maybe I’m wrong and maybe I’m naive but I think even those people who did it didn’t mean it seriously. They weren’t joking — it’s a bad, bad way of expressing that they’re not happy with the way he played. But that shouldn’t be there. Those people should be ashamed of themselves, big time.”

Supporters banded together to vote Lovren the club’s Player of the Month, despite his struggles on the pitch – and Jürgen Klopp appreciates this gesture: “It only shows how fans are different from people who are very loud on social media or wherever. That’s how I see it. In the more difficult moments, you have to really show togetherness. I think it’s one of the best signs. I could not imagine the fans would react that quick. I’m not sure exactly when the vote was, but obviously, that was the reaction and I really like the fact that they did it because it’s a fantastic sign.”

Bilić made another comment on Lovren’s situation: “I’m very, very disappointed with the treatment he has received,” added Bilic. “He’s a very good player. He’s more than a centre-back. He never hides on the pitch. He’s always there. A lot of mistakes, sometimes he’s making up for somebody else’s mistakes. It’s not easy to play centre-back at Liverpool because of where they stand.”