The more things change, the more the stay the same. The fourth successive draw between Liverpool and Manchester United followed a script requiring little in the way of imagination: the Reds spurned the customary number of glorious chances, Jose Mourinho set up his flat track bully side to not lose rather than with any intent on winning, the Reds drew out yet another a “massive” performance from the goalkeeper in the opposing goal while Romelu Lukaku took up residence snugly inside Dejan Lovern’s pocket.
In this fourth meeting on English shores between the two managers, Jürgen Klopp still finds himself searching for a first win in domestic competition over his Portuguese counterpart, with United being the only side in the top 6 that the Reds manager has yet to vanquish in the league. Frustrated with yet another display of negative tactics, the German took a swipe in the post-match interview at his rival’s tendency to park large things when threatened:
"I think Man United came here for the point and they got it,” the Liverpool boss remarked. “We wanted three points and didn't get it. I'm sure if we played like this, you could not do this at Liverpool. Obviously for Man United it is OK.
I’m furious. Is there any point watching Mourinho’s Man Utd when we play big teams away from home ♂️— #GrenfellTower (@Shingy_Rozay) October 14, 2017
"It's quite difficult when a top-class team like Man United has that defensive approach. You're not going to get 20 chances. But we had enough, a big one in the first half, and a penalty I feel, we were unlucky."
Despite seemingly scoring for fun in their unbeaten run to start the season, Mourinho predictably reverted to type with his trademark regressive big game tactics, his expensive attack totaling only a single shot on target. However, in shamelessly Mourinho fashion, the United manager still attempted to place the blame at Klopp’s feet for…fielding his current best XI?
"They played 90 minutes with [Emre] Can, [Jordan] Henderson and [Georginio] Wijnaldum and I thought playing at home, seven points behind us, they are going to change. They never did,” the former Chelsea manager complained.
"I need my bench and I have no bench,” he continued, presumably in reference to his £712m squad. “I need to play against Henderson, Can and Wijnaldum, power and energy. I had no power and energy.
"I only had two midfield players and had no one else to compensate that. I had no chance to bring the game in another direction so I think it is a positive point for us."
Sure thing, buddy.