It’s been a horrible week for us Reds. I went into the game against City last week with so much hope and expectation. After yesterday’s draw against Burnley I just feel like we’re back to square one. Nothing has changed. We are still ridiculously brittle at the back and way too wasteful in front of goal. It’s like we’re on a constant loop. Rinse and repeat!
As I’ve said before, the game against City was a freak show. They are a fabulous side who have scored 15 goals in the last week and conceded none. Scary form. In our last two home games we’ve had 60 shots, scored just the 3 goals and conceded 3 goals that literally only we could concede.
The game yesterday was almost a carbon copy of the Sevilla game in midweek. Once again we go behind to a goal entirely of our own making. Trent Alexander-Arnold gets beaten too easily in the air on the left edge of our penalty area. The ball drops into the box where Joel Matip and the recalled Ragnar Klavan both have the chance to attack the ball but don’t. Their indecisiveness was breathtaking. Klavan was virtually hiding behind Matip. Joke defending and we all know the rest.
To our credit we level things almost immediately through Mo Salah. He was superb. Always a threat. If he stays fit, he will score 20+ goals for us this season. He has 5 already and if he’s honest with himself he could have been in double figures. Bargain.
We then proceed to pepper the Burnley goal but it always felt like it was going to be one of those days yet again. Most of our chances were shots from range. We all knew Burnley would come to defend but there wasn’t enough patience shown.
We had the players to unlock the doors in Coutinho, Firmino and Sturridge it it just didn’t happen. It was great to see Sturridge back. He did look sharp and with a little more luck could have scored. Coutinho is still not quite right after his timeout from the cause. I remember it took him a good month to get back to speed after his injury lay-off last season. He showed some nice touches but took too many pot-shots. He needs to settle down and get back into some rhythm.
Firmino had one of those quiet games he can have from time to time. It didn’t help that he had more of a left-sided role yesterday. I thought Solanke looked good when he came on. He offered us a different option up top but he will know he should have scored that gilt-edged chance from 3 yards out late on. You just knew it wasn’t going to be our day after that.
As always I was on social media a lot after the game and Twitter especially is a dangerous place as a Red after a result she like this. I question some fans sanity as I read their messages. So many idiots calling for Jurgen Klopp’s head. It truly is unbelievable to read some of the drivel that is spouted out on there.
My theory on the Klopp situation is this. Yes he has made mistakes primarily in terms of the backline. We know we need more quality in the centre of defence. We should have strengthened in the summer. From the naked eye it appears he put all his eggs in one basket in going after Virgil van Dijk. That failed of course. Surely we could have got someone else of similar quality.
Has he shown too much faith in what we have defensively? I think so. It’s an admirable quality to have that belief in your players but it’s becoming clearer by the minute that such belief is flawed. We go into every game knowing that we are going to concede. Our attack is good but it’s not that good that it can bail us out every time. The season is only a month old and already our backline has cost us 6 points. 4 points in the PL against Watford and Burnley and 2 in the CL against Sevilla. This has to stop.
It’s a fact that we have been wasteful in front of goal but bar the City debacle, we have scored in every game. All those drawn games become wins if the back four stopped the stupidity. It is just so frustrating. I could easily bring up the absence of Sadio Mane yesterday but I’m not because every was more than enough on that pitch against Burnley have won the game. We have Leicester away twice now in the next week. Not the games you want when you’re in a bit of a slump but this squad has got to step up and make us fans forget the last 7 days.
You just know this team can explode against anyone at any given moment. We also know we have the unwanted ability to implode at any given moment. Less of the latter please boys!
Up The Reds!