What Has Gone Wrong In Liverpool’s Premier League Title Defence?


2021-01-22 07:41:31




After romping to a first league crown for 30 years last season, Liverpool are suffering a hangover in their title defence as Jurgen Klopp’s men have gone five games without a Premier League win for the first time since 2017. A remarkable 68-game unbeaten run in the league at Anfield came to an end in shock fashion on Thursday as Burnley became the first visiting side to emerge victorious in nearly four years with a 1-0 win. Liverpool are still just six points off the top in fourth, but momentum is with the Manchester giants as United and City look set to do battle for the title.

Newsbeep

Klopp, meanwhile, is already turning his attention just to ensuring Liverpool do not fail to qualify for next season’s Champions League by dropping out the top four.

So how has a side that set club record points tallies in each of the past two seasons fallen so fast?

Injuries

The loss of the talismanic Virgil van Dijk for the season to knee ligament damage in October would have been a big enough loss on its own to challenge Liverpool’s title credentials.

However, the Dutchman’s absence has been compounded by another long-term injury to a centre-back in Joe Gomez and Joel Matip’s fitness problems.

Without a recognised senior centre-back in recent weeks Klopp has resorted to fielding midfielders Fabinho and Jordan Henderson at the back.

Liverpool’s defensive record since Van Dijk’s injury is still impressive, conceding just nine goals in 14 games.

But that has come at the expense of destabilising the rest of the team.

Without the comfort of Van Dijk and Gomez’s pace to hold a high line and the ball-winning ability of Fabinho and Henderson in midfield, Liverpool’s pressing game has eased off.

Injuries have also taking their toll further forward without Diogo Jota over the past month.

The Portuguese made a blistering start to his Liverpool career, scoring seven times in his first nine appearances.

Since Jota suffered a costly knee injury in a Champions League dead rubber against Midtjylland in early December, Klopp is short on options to provide competition for Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino.

Front three reliance

Salah, Mane and Firmino will live long in even Liverpool’s storied history as a front three that ended the Reds’ long wait for a league title and delivered a sixth European Cup.

Over the past four seasons they have been the perfect foil for one another, combining to score 248 goals.

However, with all three off form and Jota injured, the lack of goal threat in the rest of the team has been exposed.

Outside the front four, the entire Liverpool squad has provided six goals in 19 league games with no player scoring more than once.

That is more than a temporary problem with Salah, Mane and Firmino all at least approaching the latter end of their peak years.

But the lack of back-up for Klopp to work with was on show against Burnley as Salah and Firmino were left on the bench.

In came Divock Origi and Alex Oxlade Chamberlain, but both were hauled off early in the second half after Origi missed by far his side’s best chance of the match.

Running on empty

Klopp’s men followed up on an unprecedented title showdown with Manchester City in 2018/19, which saw them miss out despite amassing 97 points, with a club record 99 points last season.

After also reaching two Champions League finals in the past three seasons and the often soulless atmosphere of a season without full stands, it is understandable if Liverpool’s desire has dropped off this season.

At their best, it is the intensity with which Klopp sides play that make them so fearsome.

Even when results were still consistently good early in the season, the German was bemoaning the draining schedule his side faced due to the late start to the campaign, enforced by the coronavirus pandemic’s impact on last season.

Promoted

With a depleted squad, little recovery time and no raucous Liverpool support to rally them, the Reds have the look of a side run into the ground.

The worry for Klopp is there is no guarantee the slide has bottomed out. After a trip to Manchester United in the FA Cup on Sunday, Liverpool face five of the top seven in their next six league games.

Topics mentioned in this article



Source link

83 Comments

  1. JbdcGroom January 22, 2021
  2. Jvcbxsting January 22, 2021
  3. Nlbxsnopy January 22, 2021
  4. AqbvGroom January 22, 2021
  5. JbdcGroom January 22, 2021
  6. KbctZece January 22, 2021
  7. Nlbxsnopy January 22, 2021
  8. FsbxGroom January 22, 2021
  9. Fbdhsnopy January 22, 2021
  10. KbctZece January 22, 2021
  11. JbdcGroom January 22, 2021
  12. FsbxGroom January 22, 2021
  13. KbctZece January 22, 2021
  14. Jvcbxsting January 22, 2021
  15. Fbdhsnopy January 22, 2021
  16. Jvcbxsting January 22, 2021
  17. Nlbxsnopy January 22, 2021
  18. Nlbxsnopy January 22, 2021
  19. LcxGroom January 22, 2021
  20. Jvcbxsting January 22, 2021
  21. Nlbxsnopy January 22, 2021
  22. Fbdhsnopy January 22, 2021
  23. Fbdhsnopy January 22, 2021
  24. FsbxGroom January 22, 2021
  25. Jvcbxsting January 22, 2021
  26. LcxGroom January 22, 2021
  27. AqbvGroom January 22, 2021
  28. JbdcGroom January 22, 2021
  29. Fbdhsnopy January 22, 2021
  30. Fbdhsnopy January 22, 2021
  31. Nlbxsnopy January 22, 2021
  32. JbdcGroom January 22, 2021
  33. FsbxGroom January 22, 2021
  34. Nlbxsnopy January 22, 2021
  35. AqbvGroom January 22, 2021
  36. LcxGroom January 22, 2021
  37. Nlbxsnopy January 22, 2021
  38. KbctZece January 22, 2021
  39. KbctZece January 22, 2021
  40. LcxGroom January 22, 2021
  41. FsbxGroom January 22, 2021
  42. AqbvGroom January 22, 2021
  43. Jvcbxsting January 22, 2021
  44. Nlbxsnopy January 22, 2021
  45. KbctZece January 22, 2021
  46. FsbxGroom January 22, 2021
  47. Nlbxsnopy January 22, 2021
  48. tadalafil 40 mg daily February 15, 2021
  49. JamesBriff February 16, 2021
  50. zithromax February 20, 2021
  51. WesleyUtiff March 5, 2021
  52. Randyabemi March 8, 2021
  53. Wayneweday March 11, 2021
  54. Wayneweday March 13, 2021
  55. Wayneweday March 15, 2021
  56. Ricardomus March 16, 2021
  57. Ricardomus March 17, 2021
  58. Ricardomus March 18, 2021
  59. Ricardomus March 19, 2021
  60. Ricardomus March 20, 2021
  61. MarvinHag March 22, 2021
  62. MarvinHag March 23, 2021
  63. MarvinHag March 25, 2021
  64. MarvinHag March 26, 2021
  65. MarvinHag March 27, 2021
  66. MarvinHag March 28, 2021
  67. VictorJonge March 30, 2021
  68. VictorJonge March 31, 2021
  69. Frankhem April 1, 2021
  70. Frankhem April 3, 2021
  71. Charlesget April 5, 2021
  72. Charlesget April 6, 2021
  73. Alfredted April 7, 2021
  74. Alfredted April 8, 2021
  75. HarryShife April 10, 2021
  76. HarryShife April 11, 2021
  77. Robertovob April 14, 2021
  78. Robertovob April 15, 2021
  79. Robertovob April 16, 2021
  80. Robertovob April 17, 2021
  81. Rafaelweilk April 17, 2021
  82. Rafaelweilk April 19, 2021
  83. Rafaelweilk April 20, 2021

Leave a Reply