Jurgen Klopp doesn’t think Fabinho has what it takes to become an instant at Liverpool.
The Brazilian midfielder joined the Champions League finalists for £43.7m from AS Monaco.
Fabinho has racked up less than a minute of competitive action since then – making a late appearance as a substitute against Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League.
And, though the 24-year-old’s long wait for a full debut will come against Chelsea in the League Cup third-round clash, Klopp believes there is still a way to go until he is fully acclimatised.
According to the German, the Brazilian could take almost six months to gel.
“It’s not different between him and other players. It’s really not complicated, he just needs to get used to it,” the manager said.
“It’s about positioning, it’s about reaction, about spaces defensively, closing them, offensively using them.
“It’s a football team with a specific way of playing. It needs time, and they were all used to other football teams. So you have natural runs in a team.
“Like, let me say, a very famous movement here was Phil Coutinho. Half left, [cut] inside, nice shot! For this one, you needed somebody to overlap and make it difficult to defend, so that one defender at least is busy. Things like that explain it. It’s completely normal.
There’s no time to say, ‘I give you that, or that’, but it will happen. Because the game is so quick and intense, it needs to get natural. It’s not about changing these players, we want their football personality. They are here because of what they did.
“Three or five weeks sound like a long time in football, but to improve something you can give half a year, to really make the next step. That’s it.”