Klopp underestimated just how bad Liverpool mess is – the big question now is IF he can sort it out rather than when
EVERYONE has severely underestimated the size of Liverpool’s problems. Unfortunately, so did the manager.
Jurgen Klopp, a brilliant football coach, increasingly looks like someone who has run out of answers and basically, run out of steam.
AFPJurgen Klopp needs to fix Liverpool’s mess[/caption]
PALiverpool have been woeful since the World Cup break[/caption]
Not since 2011 under Roy Hodgson has a Liverpool team looked in such a mess and over this next month, it will need something extraordinary to get the club back into shape.
You can understand why Klopp was at a loss to explain how his team started off so pathetically by gifting Wolves – who in fairness played very well – two goals in the first 12 minutes.
You can understand why Klopp remains cheesed off with owners FSG for not giving him the huge sums of cash compared to other clubs.
Equally, Klopp also has to understand that he has been given a bit of money in the last 12 months.
Instead, he chose to refresh the team’s attack when it was blindingly obvious that central midfield was the number one priority.
Liverpool bought Luis Diaz, Darwin Nunez and Cody Gakpo, along with a few others, in deals which could cost up to £200m.
But you only have to look at the last three away Premier League losses – 3-0 at Wolves, 3-0 at Brighton and 3-1 at Brentford – to see the urgent issues are elsewhere than attack.
At his pre-match press conference, Klopp jokingly said he did not want to speak about Chelsea’s transfer spending because his lawyer was not around.
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At his post-match press conference at Molineux, Klopp chose not to answer a question from a journalist who has a long history of covering Liverpool.
The German, who has enjoyed thousands of positive stories written about him over his seven-and-half years, claimed he did not like an article written by this reporter.
But it seems Klopp may have been thinking about another piece in the week, written by a different journalist.
Also, Klopp’s refusal to answer the question was edited out of the press conference video for the club’s official YouTube channel.
So that sums up Liverpool right now. A bit confused and all over the place.
Incredibly, they have already conceded more goals than last season’s 26.
On Saturday, Liverpool were a mess from the start and could have conceded two even before Joel Matip’s fifth minute own goal which came after Hwang Hee-chan attempted to square the ball.
Craig Dawson smashed in the second seven minutes later after yet more terrible defending.
And despite a better performance from Liverpool in the second half, Ruben Neves delivered a classy third after Adama Traore tore down the right.
Liverpool’s next run of games is potentially disastrous.
In seven days it’s the Merseyside derby against Everton, followed by a trip to Newcastle and then an away game at Real Madrid in the Champions League.
Klopp, at the very least, needs all his injured players back – even though that may not be enough.
Here, we look at the problems Klopp faces around the squad.
Alisson is not having his best season but clearly not the worst performer by any means.
What a complete mess, as summed up by this shocking display. Virgil van Dijk has not been great this season, but they are still better with him in the team.
With Ibrahima Konate also injured, Joe Gomez and Joel Matip faced Wolves and could not have played any worse. Matip suffered his worst game for the club.
Andy Robertson has not been at his best, as proved when he failed to cut out a free-kick which led to the second.
As for Trent Alexander-Arnold, he will do well to get into the next England squad.
A complete disaster area. They need not just one or two new players, but three. A proper reset. The players are either too old or too young.
Fabinho was ill for the trip to Wolves but that was no miss as his form has dropped off a cliff. Jordan Henderson, too, has struggled.
Stefan Bajcetic looks a cracking prospect and was Liverpool’s best player even though he lost a tackle ahead of the third goal – but he is 18. Harvey Elliott is a talent but is nowhere near the finished product.
James Milner, Naby Keita and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain are all out of contract in the summer.
Liverpool were always going to miss Sadio Mane. Mo Salah has been off the pace since signing a new contract.
Roberto Firmino, out of contract in the summer, has not played since November due to his fitness but he could still accept a new deal and Liverpool probably need him to stay.
Diogo Jota and Luis Diaz have been injured, Darwin Nunez remains raw while Cody Gakpo is yet to impress since coming from Holland.
Liverpool have won just three of their 10 competitive games since the World Cup – while they managed seven wins out of the 10 matches before Qatar.
So as Klopp said, you can no longer blame last year’s 63-game season as they should have had time to recover physically.
As for Klopp sorting out this shambles, it is now a case of if he can do it, rather than when.
GettyJurgen Klopp and his coaching staff looked dejected as their side lost to Wolves[/caption]
ReutersThe loss at Wolves was Liverpool’s third in a row[/caption]