Why Jurgen Klopp shouldn't leave Liverpool
The question on the lips of every rival fan currently is should Jurgen Klopp leave Liverpool? A disastrous run of form has seen the Premier League Champions win only 2 of their last 10 league matches, which has led to the reds being 13 points adrift of league leaders Manchester City, and only 6 points clear of 10th placed Arsenal.
Then so began the rumours, with many individuals online claiming that the Liverpool manager had resigned after a dressing room bust up following a 3-1 defeat to Leicester City over the weekend, tying in with his own personal trauma.
Many sources had suggested that the club had offered the German the opportunity to have a short break, something which Klopp himself debunked in his pre match press conference on Monday, stating that he doesn’t actually need a break despite the passing of his late mother.
So that leaves the question begging, should Klopp leave?
The simple answer is absolutely fucking not!
Liverpool’s poor run of form can be attributed to a number of factors over the last few months, with main issue being consistent run of injuries to the squad, something that the manager is unable to control. The loss of Van Dijk in October set out tough defensive challenges to come throughout the season, yet the squad coped well, topping the table over four consecutive match weeks until match week 17, with an away defeat to Southampton.
So where did these issues come from?
Moving Fabinho to centre back is a factor, yet the squad still performed well as he partnered Joe Gomez and then Joel Matip at the back. However, with Matip being unreliable with even more injuries, Jordan Henderson was forced to play alongside him, taking him out of midfield also.
So began the attacking issues, with Liverpool failing to score in 4 consecutive league games until two convincing victories at Tottenham and West Ham. The introduction of Thiago into a no.8 role helped improve performances, yet the midfield was still lacking its engine, so the results started to drop again, with the reds now having lost their last 3 league games, as well as losing their 4-year strong unbeaten home record.
Moving both Fabinho and Henderson out of the midfield has evidently slowed the team down, the fast paced, one touch build up play from last season has evaporated and the team has suffered as a result.
Injuries haven’t just plagued the defence; they’ve popped up all over the team sheet. Players like Mane, Salah and Thiago missed matches from Covid and longer injuries, players like Milner, Trent, Keita, Fabinho, Jota and Alisson have been in and out of team, with only Robertson, Gini and Firmino being able to stay fit for the majority of the campaign.
Given the constant chopping and changing of the starting line-up over the last few months, the reds have done remarkably well to stay in title race for as long as they did, whilst maintaining a strong push for Champions League football next season.
However, the issues no longer stem down to just the current injury crisis, the mentality of the squad is now at an all time low, after two seasons of incredible highs where they became World, European and English Champions. This period, without a doubt, is the worst run this squad would’ve faced as a collective, with the confidence of the players suffering as a result.
The low mentality of the squad was more notable than ever in the recent 3-1 defeat to Leicester City, a game that Liverpool played very well in until a defensive collapse, after taking a deserved lead in the 67th minute. Then, in the span of 7 minutes, the team collapsed and conceded three goals for a result that doesn’t merit the overall performance.
The same occurred against Manchester City the week before, a decent overall team performance until two horrendous errors from Alisson and a suburb solo goal from Phil Foden saw the reds crash to an embarrassing 4-1 defeat.
In order for the squad to regain their winning mentality, in order to lift the spirits of the boys, they need to put in a strong showing in the next few matches. To do this, the likes of Henderson and Fabinho need to move back into midfield, with new boys Kabak and Davies being trusted to play at the back. Restoring the engine back into the heart of the midfield will allow the reds to improve their attacking tempo and their quick pressing, from there on the results should follow.
Jurgen Klopp has been essential to the club over the last 6 years, turning a bang average team into Premier League Champions. Any suggestions that he should leave the club after his first real, tough spell are absolutely insane and should be treated as what they are; an absolute joke.