Liverpool's goalkeeping coach, John Achterberg, has provided a fascinating insight into the role of Simon Mignolet in the 3-5-2 formation Brendan Rodgers has tested in recent weeks.

The tactic, which sees the Reds operate with wing-backs and three central defenders, was first used during the 1-0 defeat by Manchester United at Old Trafford.

However, Liverpool reaped the rewards of the formation during their 3-1 victory over Sunderland on Sunday.

Achterberg explained how the 'keeper also has an adapted role to play when the make-up of the backline alters.

"In terms of the goalkeeper playing out, he'll still look to play the ball into wide areas," he told

"But in terms of when the opponents are on the attack, he needs to look at the shape of the team and see if he can help with tactical information that the three centre-halves and others need.

"In terms of the centre-halves, he needs to help them to play with enough distance between each other. He also needs to ensure that, if the ball is on the right side, then the left-back needs to drop in to make up the numbers and make it four at the back.

"The 'keeper needs to try and see if that balance is right and if the centre-halves are covering the right distance between each other. He needs to communicate with them to help us be solid in the defence."

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Achterberg works with Mignolet day-in, day-out on the training pitches at Melwood - and their routines are driven by team tactics as well as shot-stopping.

So when the manager spoke about introducing an extra system of play, the goalkeeping coach was on hand to offer some pointers as to how the stoppers can play their part.

"I give them all this above information, I tell them about the opposition and how they do things - and I give them information on what specific players can do. All this helps their game," said Achterberg.

"Simon has adjusted fine. Your main priority is to do your first job and being in the right position at the right time and making the saves.

"That's his first job, after that he needs to look at the organisation and he has time in the game to do this and help the team be in the right shape and have the right balance."