Liverpool’s 2-0 loss to Hull City earlier today was bad. Really bad. The result leaves them with only one win in all competitions in 2017 and none in the Premier League. Liverpool’s title challenge is all but finished and Top 4 is much less certain than it did on Boxing Day.
Everyone connected to Liverpool— players, technical staff, executives, and fans— are trying to make sense of this dismal run of form and figure out how to pull out of it. Jürgen Klopp is as desperate as any of us for answers. What he does know is that performances like today will not do at all.
“The overall performance was not like it should be. It makes no sense for us to play like this. If we played like we did in the second half for the whole game, no team can cope with us. But we need to wake up; that was not acceptable.”
Klopp was also notably down on his side’s Top 4 chances after today’s loss. A win or a draw by Manchester City on Sunday against Swansea will knock Liverpool down to fifth place. The manager told his players that league position should be the least of their worries right now.
“The Champions League is a big, big target but it is so difficult because there are so many challengers. After today's performance we don't have to think about this. A week ago I spoke about expectations and said we were still allowed to have a positive look on the situation because we are still fourth in the league. But, after a game like this, we have to take all the criticism because we expect more from ourselves and we have to show more than we did today. It is my responsibility to make it possible.”
Liverpool have a full week to rest up before their next game at home to Tottenham. It’s hard to think of next Saturday as anything but a Must Win— which, given how well Spurs have done this season so far, makes that meeting all the more fraught.