Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp continues to back his boys after their latest setback, a 1-0 loss to Fulham at Anfield on Sunday.
It’s six-straight league losses for the Premier League champions, whose defensive injuries have been well-documented but whose letdown has been in the attacking third.
Liverpool cannot break down the opposition, especially when it’s in Klopp’s detested low block. The Reds have 10 goals in 12 Premier League games during 2021, eight coming in three wins.
Is it about desire? Or mentality? Klopp says no.
“You can see it, it’s still in the boys there,” Klopp said. “They have it all but at the moment they can’t show it. It would be a masterpiece to find out how we can change it overnight. The good news is we have another competition in three days.”
If Liverpool is tired, perhaps the resting has come too late. Consider the graphic at right, culled from a search of the most Premier League minutes played this season amongst forwards or attacking midfielders.
Liverpool has three players in the top 10, and Salah has played the ninth-most minutes of any Champions League forward and Mane 26th.
Klopp made a lot of changes to the team, starting with Fabinho, Thiago Alcantara, Trent Alexander-Arnold, and Sadio Mane on the bench and leaving Roberto Firmino out of the team altogether.
“All the players who usually play have to run a lot,” Klopp said. “It was clear we had to make changes today. Some of the players were just not able to do it again. It takes time to adapt in the game. Obviously not early enough or not good enough, whatever. Just not enough.”
The Reds look beaten up and weary, not like they lack faith in the system.
Ideas do appear to be lacking and a woeful run like this should be below a club of Liverpool’s ilk.
Diogo Jota’s return is nice but Xherdan Shaqiri and Divock Origi have provided little. Rhian Brewster was sold but has done almost nothing at Sheffield United, while Harvey Elliott is doing great in the Championship but just 17.
Klopp doesn’t feel comfortable with anyone outside of his big three and Jota. That’s clear, but It’s cost him.