Liverpool kicked off the season with a 3 all draw against Watford and it immediately became clear that the defense needed to be strengthened but nothing was done in the market. Van Dijk who is -and has been for a while- their number one target was once again not delivered to Jürgen klopp. Other options were not explored and those present didn’t look like they were ready to step up their game.
Then they won the champions league playoffs in a comfortable manner beating the German side Hoffenheim both home and away with an aggregate score of 6-3. Suddenly it looked like there might be hope after all. All that optimism that the pre-season campaign birthed came back. A campaign that saw them defeat the likes of Bayern Munich and Hertha Berlin. What followed was a win over crystal palace but the level of euphoria was raised to the ceiling when the 4 to nil battering of Arsenal FC happened. What made it even more interesting was the fact that they kept clean sheets in both matches and the side started to look like they have the identity of Jürgen klopp.
From that point on it has been a downward spiral in England save for the victory over Leicester city which of course was a very close encounter and it came at the back of the Carabao cup loss to Leicester city. Since the Arsenal match, the two matches where Liverpool did not concede a goal in England is the one where they too drew blanks; it was the goalless draw against Manchester United; and that where they trumped Huddersfield.
In the champions league, they have played draws against Sevilla and Spartak Moscow with one win against lowly Maribor. The match against Maribor was the first time in a very long time that Liverpool fans have seen their club look so superior to another. It was a 7-0 thrashing but any hope that may have risen was quickly dampened by the 4-1 defeat to Tottenham hotspur.
Liverpool players and coaching crew and fans were quickly reminded about their defensive lapses. It was so obvious that Dejan Lovren was hulled off before halftime and was replaced by Ox-lade Chamberlain but the bold move was neither enough to hide the lapse nor undo the damage.
Liverpool currently sit 6th on the log with 10 matches played so far and a maximum of 16 points from a possible 30. Leaders man city have 28 while Man United and Tottenham have 23 and 20 points respectively with Chelsea completing the top 4 with 19 points joint with Arsenal. Liverpool is one out of only three teams in the premier league’s current top ten who have conceded almost as much as they have scored. Of all teams above them on the table, they were able to get a victory against just arsenal and they are yet to play Chelsea.
This is however not to take anything away from their style of play which involves possession football, many short passes, and attacking the ball through the middle. They have the quality in front to achieve success with their style of play but their defense leaves a lot to worry about.
Something needs to be done about the back line in the winter window if Klopp doesn’t want to draw blanks again at the third time of asking because of a team, whose defense is in crisis, is itself in crisis.
ManCity 1/5 with Bet365 to win Premier League title