A disappointing result for Liverpool on a dreary day at St. Mary’s. Jürgen Klopp’s squad had come into the matchday looking to remain at the top of the league table and had been helped in that cause by Arsenal’s draw with Manchester United at teatime, but needed a win to stay ahead of Manchester City who beat Crystal Palace 2-1. However with the rain pouring down on England’s south coast, Claude Puel’s highly-organized Southampton weathered the Red goal storm on display for much of this campaign to hold Liverpool to a 0-0 draw.
Coming off of the back of a grueling international break in which key players either picked up knocks or looked worse for wear when on the pitch, Liverpool were unable to quite replicate the scintillating play that has seen them top Europe’s five major leagues in chances created so far this season.
“It was an intense game,” Klopp admitted in the tunnel after the match, “The first half was not bad, [but] not bad is not enough. Second half was very good; we could’ve won, we should’ve won because of the chances [we had]. We played against a very organized side, [which] wasn’t difficult for me to see.”
The German manager went on to commend his squad for their fight back in the second half, despite missing the vital Adam Lallana to an ongoing groin issue, and with the likes of Sadio Mané and Roberto Firmino, both of whom, in addition to the ailing Philippe Coutinho, had racked up significant air miles for country over the break, turning in slightly listless performances.
“We were up against one of the best organized sides in the league in Southampton, while we had no [training] sessions because the Brazil players came [back from the international break] too late to prepare. So we used the first half to prepare ourselves for the second half,” he quipped, “and the second half was really good.”
With barely a quarter of the season gone however, the boss was careful to keep things in perspective, “Now it’s a draw, it’s a clean sheet. We didn’t give them a lot of chances, nearly no chances. We had enough and that’s how it is.”