SOMETIMES players’ performances over a period of time can burn your head out – and from that point onwards the smallest mistake can frustrate the life out of you.
Even if they do something good, you feel like the bad is around the corner. And when it comes it merely confirms something you had long since decided: that they’re not good enough.
Dejan Lovren and Simon Mignolet had reached that point with a significant number of Liverpool fans – a number that swelled as Sunday’s defeat to Tottenham Hotspur played out.
It seems that for every great Mignolet save, there’s a flap at a ball coming into the box or a dropped catch. For the positive of a last-minute Lovren winner against Borussia Dortmund, there’s the negative of a wild attempt at a clearance or a lapse in concentration which puts the team under pressure and the goal at risk.
No matter how much we see of the good, a feeling the bad is sneaking up with both Mignolet and Lovren haunts many of the Red hordes. Those players have lost any leeway as a result.
It can frustrate then when Jürgen Klopp praises the qualities of these players. Why the comments in the summer about there not being five players that could improve us at centre half when Lovren appears to be struggling with the task of playing for Liverpool?
Likewise for Mignolet. Let’s not forget that it was only just over a year ago that Klopp signed Loris Karius for around £5million from Mainz and made it clear that the German would be his new number one.
A broken finger stopped that becoming immediately true but the 24-year-old stopper was still thrown straight into the fold at a time when Mignolet hadn’t done much wrong.
Unfortunately for Karius, and Klopp, he didn’t take his chance and Mignolet was brought back in. Admittedly, the Belgian strung together a series of good performances towards the back end of last season but plenty remained unconvinced.
Klopp showed a lack of faith in Mignolet in the first place by bombing him out for a young lad with no Premier League experience. A U-turn on that decision always looked risky. And so it has proved.
The way the manager has dealt with the goalkeeping situation has left a void of uncertainty around three players in a key position. Not allowing Danny Ward to go on loan to Huddersfield in summer before handing him just a single start so far this season doesn’t make a whole lot of sense in hindsight.
But it is not only in the goalkeeping department where Klopp has flip flopped on faith.
To make Virgil van Dijk the club’s top target in the summer, and for it to fail so publicly, must have made Lovren believe that his place was under threat. Since then though Klopp has suggested that no alternatives were better or obtainable.
Whether or not he thought he could train Lovren into becoming a better player, it was negligent of him to believe that the same problems wouldn’t continue to occur with the same back four that made so many errors last season.
That defence may have helped to deliver a top-four spot and finished the season as statistically the fifth best defence in the league but there were enough hairy moments to suggest changes were needed.
That’s part of the issue with Alberto Moreno. Despite the fact he seems to have turned it around recently, and deserves to be praised for his hard work in doing so, he burnt out heads in the 2016 Europa League final and at the start of last season to such an extent that he was bombed out for the majority of the rest of the campaign — making just two starts in the league.
Are we really to believe he doesn’t have those rash moments in his locker?
Klopp hasn’t been afraid to get rid of players when they have consistently flattered to deceive. Christian Benteke and Jordon Ibe were quickly identified as a poor fit for his plans and moved on. What was it specifically about those two players that made him think he couldn’t persevere with them, and why does he think he can with these players who are proving detrimental to Liverpool’s chances of success?
Lovren and Mignolet have cost The Reds on numerous occasions before. It’s difficult to believe they won’t do it again. The club have improved in other key areas but they’ll struggle to be successful if they don’t address their biggest weakness.
With Benteke and Ibe, Klopp showed that he can be ruthless with players who don’t aid the cause or fit his vision. It’s time for similar ruthlessness to return.
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Klopp is too to be blamed for all our troubles in Defence and GK , he ignored every pundit & we as Fans about his GK & Defence by being stubborn & above all arrogant, this will be the cause of his downfall he is not blind to have seen the problems but simply arrogant and believes his knows better, its too late to rectify the problem as we are out of the title race for now, unless we do a Chelsea like last season come back strongly and go and win the title ,Jurgen smell the coffee you are a manager of our great club LFC and not Dortmund
For the 100th time – Klopp signed a GK, 2 CBs, a LB and promoted a lad to RB. All of which suggests he sees the problem with what he inherited.
If the recruitment hasn’t been great that is fundamentally different to not identifying and addressing the problem at all.
I respectfully disagree. Yes, he may have signed those players and I know fees aren’t the be-all and end-all of a players value (Ballack wasn’t a bad freebie) but the sum total spent on aforementioned GK, 2 CB’s, a LB & Trent amounts to less than £20m which is about 40% of a John Stones, or Kyle Walker.
It shows he may have noticed the problem but hasn’t been willing or able to shell out the requisite cash to improve the situation, instead relying on his fabled coaching ability, it’s also unfair to expect Alexander-Arnold to be the answer to our problems. Of the 2 CB’s he bought, one is so untrusted by Klopp that he elected to play Lucas on multiple occasions last season and against Spurs Klopp decided to move several players out of position so he wouldn’t have to bring him on.
For the money we were allegedly willing to spend on Van Dijk we could have gotten Howedes who went to Juventus and Davinson Sanchez at Spurs, I don’t think you can say that either of them are no better than what we currently have and Virgil could still be signed next summer. Instead we find ourselves in our current situation where we have 1 first choice CB followed by Gomez, Lovren and Klavan, probably in that order but not much between them.
so you agree he knew the problem and got players in to fix it and recruiting the players we did is the issue?
I’m not going to get into a roundabout argument with you when you fail to take anything I’ve said into consideration.
You clearly don’t want to give Klopp any responsibility for the current shambles the defence is in, which is your prerogative, good luck with that.
Benteke and Ibe were sold because the money was right. I don’t believe for one second that it has anything to do with Klopp being ruthless. I know the ins and outs from his first season at Dortmund indicate some kind of ruthless streak, but we haven’t seen an ounce of that since he has been at Liverpool in my opinion. I am hoping that his demeanour after the Spurs game is a sign that he is willing to change that and install some bite into this feeble group of players.
The comment in Moreno and having more rash moments in his locker…how many other attacking full backs do you watch on a detailed and regular basis? Kyle Walker has red cards to his name, Danny Rose regularly uses his pace to get out of trouble to name 2 (from conversations with Spurs match going mates).
Comparisons don’t enter the argument with Moreno and that makes it unfair. Makes it seems like no other attacking full back ever gets caught, when the reality is they do – a lot.
Same with the snide about the 5th best defence but hairy moments – its like no other club ever has a scramble or a last ditch clearance or fuck up not actually costing them….its mad.
Kyle Walker and Danny Rose weren’t left out for almost a whole season and not trusted to play over somebody who isn’t even naturally left sided, never mind a full back.
Klopp showed that he didn’t trust Moreno’s ability, he’s playing well now but how long before he lets himself down again? That was the question. He’s not even comparable with those two you’ve mentioned.
Danny Rose was trusted by Spurs so much he was out on loan until he was 23. He’d made less than 50 appearances by then. He also started out as a winger.
Who knew players could reinvent themselves as they mature eh? I suppose that only applies elsewhere though. Not fucking Moreno, no chance.
I don’t think the comment about 5th best defence is in any way snide. Apart from the last 4 games of the season where the team really tightened things up there was always the sense that despite not conceding many chances in any given game the opposition didn’t have to do much to score.
It’s the same case again this season when we seemingly have to create exceptional goals in order to score but our opponents have to do feck all to stick one in the other end, but they also know that a chance will present itself as we saw from the attitude Sevilla took in the CL.
As the lads alluded to in one of the Spurs podcasts, there isn’t enough or any bailing out your team mates from the players, not enough leaders and definitely not enough verbals on the pitch.
“Why the comments in the summer about there not being five players that could improve us at centre half when Lovren appears to be struggling with the task of playing for Liverpool?”
Getting tedious this, as if not signing any CB’s hinged on this comment. Whatever he said in the summer, the reality is not enough CB’s were identified by the scouts and recruitment staff, and all the work he put in for getting VVD to join the club was wasted. If he’d said our defenders are all crap and we need to replace them, but still the club didn’t manage to sign any, would that have made things better? Would he be a better manager then?
No but is he a better manager for saying we’d be fine with what we have despite the fact we probably aren’t? He completely overlooked his third-choice centre half on Sunday, he obviously doesn’t have as much faith in his options as he’s made out.
I don’t think he’s a worse manager for saying it like some have made him out to be!
And maybe he didn’t bring Klavan on because we needed to score two goals, and AOC was a better option for that? Maybe to send a message to Edwards? But say it’s because he didn’t trust Klavan to do a good job in that match, why is that a surprise? But not having faith in his options doesn’t suddenly make his comment the reason we’re in the state we’re in, especially when it was made in a summer where the transfer market was so mad that City couldn’t even buy Jonny Evans. Our scouts, and availability of players, and FFP, and who knows what else, played a bigger part I suspect than Klopp’s comment. I just find it bizarre that Klopp’s comment is consistently the most important thing about the failure to sign CB’s this summer.
its a good point that we were losing at the time, so in that context the change makes sense.
who knew Klopp could be so flexible?
I think he actually said 5 CBs who were available. That’s an important distinction I think.
Who knows if we dipped our toe in with lads who weren’t for sale. I suppose we’d have heard on twitter, right?
I can’t remember who the journalist was, but someone wrote that we tried to sign Koulibaly, but his price was too high or he didn’t want to move. Chelsea were reportedly in for him as well and they obviously didn’t get him either. “Available” is exactly the key word.
Agreed with all of that.
A lot was made about Klopp preferring Gomez to Klavan on Sunday but not about the effect Son had in the game. I think him playing, and through the middle, took us by surprise – Pochettino had been talking about springing one before the game. He’s been used sparingly this season but he’s quick and in my opinion Gomez was switched because of his pace. But if it was Llorente I expect Klavan would have come on.
As for Moreno I think it’s fair that many fans are still wary of him making mistakes. I hope he does reinvent himself but he’ll have to prove it over a full season rather than a dozen games. And even then, there will still be doubters like Rose has – it’s the nature of fans in general.
One minute to go before HT and we are back in the game. Crazy tackle by Imre and Harry Kane could not have laid it on for deli better than Matip.
But even then it was a reasonably easy save. Keeper has to go…or it will happen again. Lost two in the league. We can go again if we change the keeper.