Not many of the readers may have been born when Liverpool’s defence was this pathetic. Way back in September 1964, Bill Shankly’s Liverpool conceded 20 goals in their first nine League matches.
Maybe, Jurgen Klopp wanted to create history; and maybe, his side thought even a shambolic record is a way to create history. Klopp’s current team has conceded 16 goals following the 4-1 humbling at Tottenham drawing unwanted comparisons to historical frailties.
To put it into perspective, all four Tottenham goals at Wembley came because of goalkeeping or defensive errors. This statement has almost become a norm under Klopp making one wonder if he is doing anything to fix the malaise. Public acceptance of Dejan Lovren’s blunders or pulling him off after just 31 minutes of action is no succour. In fact, if anything, it puts more question marks over Klopp’s ability to make this side defend stoutly.
Liverpool’s Summer Woes
The seeds of this humiliation were sown in the summer with Liverpool failing to add a defensive lynchpin to their squad. Identifying an area of improvement is only half the job done because unless you address the issue, it will come back to haunt you.
And, that’s what is happening to Klopp’s men now who are beginning to feel the dire need of a presence like Virgil van Dijk at the back. The fans have no comfort under the sticks either, with Simon Mignolet going from depth to depth. He has already been at fault for 13 goals since making his Liverpool debut in August 2013 – the most by any ‘keeper in this period.
For all the beautiful football they play up front, Liverpool are a shamble at the back. The quicker Klopp can fix it, the better it is for the Premier League giants. Even the German knows that the buck stops with him and if he doesn’t find a fix soon, he could go on to make more unwanted records.
Sunday’s poor result left the Reds ninth on the table trailing leaders Manchester City by 12 points. To win the title would require a meltdown of humongous proportions from Pep Guardiola’s City and an equally astronomical improvement from Klopp’s Reds.
At this rate, both look equally improbable. At least, the latter! Don’t you think so?