Written by: Manu Rodriguez
Edited by: Justin Chua
Visual by Owen Corpus
Liverpool is one of the most prestigious football teams in the world, possessing a deep history full of silverware, most notably, 19 league titles and 6 Champions League titles. With the club having such talented teams each season, Liverpool is constantly competing for the title. In fact, the Reds won the Champions League and placed 2nd in the Premier League championship in the 2019-20 season, then won the Premier League championship the following season. Going into his 7th season at Liverpool, world-class manager Jürgen Klopp has expressed his desire to maintain his team’s title charge; however, his team has not been performing to the best of its abilities. A weak defense, shocking results, and a manager whose glory days are over are the main problems Liverpool faces. After placing 2nd last season, Jürgen Klopp insisted that “[last season’s title loss] didn’t turn me crazy, and it didn’t turn the players crazy either”. Nevertheless, Liverpool needed new motivation. The successful transfer window accomplished this, and furthermore garnered more support from the fans. All seemed well until the season began.
The unexpected poor start to this season is fueled by a weak defense. Going into this season, Liverpool had spent 95.7 million pounds, making them one of the busiest teams in the summer transfer window. This summer saw incomings such as promising striker Darwin Nuñez and young winger Luíz Diaz. As of October 17, Liverpool finds themselves at 10th, closer to relegation than the top four. The team has been severely underperforming, as they only have 2 out of 8 possible wins. Defensive records were broken for the wrong reasons as the Liverpool defense conceded 12 goals. The defense’s weakness stems from Liverpool’s injury crisis with right-back Trent Alexander-Arnold and center-back Joel Matip out injured. Due to this, Klopp’s hand has essentially been forced, having to play more inexperienced players to fill in the voids caused by the injuries.
Additionally, Liverpool’s latest 3-2 defeat to Arsenal has just rubbed salt into Liverpool’s wounds, further establishing their poorest start to a season. This shocking loss is not the only devastating result the team has experienced this season. Some of these results include frustrating draws to newly promoted Fulham and a young Crystal Palace side on the rise. The most painful result so far would be the team’s 4-0 loss to rivals Manchester United, further cementing the atrocious start to the season. A worrying statistic indicates that Liverpool has not won a game away from home yet this season. Fixing their awaty form would help massively in Liverpool’s goal to bounce back.
When a club with the stature of Liverpool starts stumbling, the fans naturally form their own opinions. One of these opinions is that Klopp is the problem at Liverpool. A passionate fan exclaimed on Twitter that there are “shades of the failing Dortmund team appearing for us and it needs to end. He [Klopp] is not the man for the club anymore! #KloppOut”. The mention of the “failing Dortmund team” is interesting as, in his seventh season at Dortmund, Klopp failed to meet the board’s expectations, resulting in his sacking. Now, Liverpool fans fear that the “seventh season curse” might happen to their team.
The football world is witnessing early signs of Liverpool’s potential fall from grace. The weak defense contribues to the team’s poor results, putting pressure on the manager who is losing confidence in his own abilities. As the season began 2 months ago, Liverpool will be eager to turn things around quickly before football fans around the world lose respect for them. Most Liverpool fans do not see waiting until the next transfer window as an option anymore. Liverpool Football Club must start playing better and doing everything they can to prevent their fans turning on them.
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