We went through this with Gomez and Matip this season as well when they were coming back that they had to play to find their form
Think it’s a bit different for Gomez, he’s still only 21/22 and has been dealing with injuries for a large part of his career with us, think the longest spell he had playing week in week out was up until he broke his ankle against Burnley last season so it’s almost to be expected he would need a run of games to get back to his consistent level.
Where as Lovren and Matip are both experienced players now, I think when you get to a certain point in your career you have to be able to come straight back into the team and deliver a good performance without having to play a few games first. Obviously if you’ve been out for a long time with something like an ACL or broken leg it’s a bit different but with Lovren and Matip it’s often a collection of constant small injuries. But even when they’ve not been playing as a result of injury, just can’t get into the team which has largely been the case with Lovren since Shrewsbury, I’d expect him to come in and play to a much better standard. He knows what level he needs to be at when coming into the team, he has played 400-500 games in his career so he should be at a point now where if he isn’t playing for however long, then when we need him to step in then he shows his experience and deliver, much like Milner has done over the years.
IMO we can’t be having 2 experienced CB’s that need 4,5,6 games in order to find a level of consistency because what happens if we lose Virgil and Joe at the same time? We end up with 2 experienced players struggling and putting in a performance like they did vs Shrewsbury together because they need a run of games. It can be very costly.
For me Lovren has to go in the summer and we need to bring someone in who has some experience about him and that can be relied upon to fill in and deliver straight away.