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Klopp Talk: Our Forwards Failed To Defend

The boss believes Liverpool’s forwards didn’t pull their weight in defense against West Brom.

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It would be hard to pinpoint any stand out performance from the Liverpool players in their disappointing game FA Cup fourth round loss to West Brom. A dreadful evening all around for everyone involved, no one will be adding this to their highlights reel.

The biggest, most persistent problem Liverpool faced on the night - and also just, like, forever - is their leaky, shambolic defense. They allowed three goals on three shots on target in the first half and couldn’t quite dig their way out of the hole in the next 45 minutes.

Klopp himself pinpointed this as the obvious issue and called out his forwards as not pulling their weight in defense.

“But if you want, since [the game against Manchester City] our offensive positions didn’t defend as well as then, for example. That’s the truth,” he admitted.

”We had two completely different games, but especially against West Brom compared to Swansea, we needed all positions to be involved in defending. These boys, we know potential wise are world class. But real world class is to bring it on the pitch again and again and again.

“West Brom was not only the most experienced team age wise that’s ever played, they had quality with Rodriguez, if he wasn’t injured for two years he’d be on another level and he is in a good moment for West Brom. Robson-Kanu, hard workers in midfield, Brunt crosses from everywhere, so they are a good team.

“From that, you need to defend really in a compact formation. We were not compact. That’s the problem. When they played a pass for the first goal, we lost two challenges, that’s not cool. We could have defended it already. The second one is just, as a group, no good defending.”

If this description gives you a nagging sense of deja vu, it’s because we’ve seen a similar story played out in front of our goal time and again this season. Blaming the likes of Roberto Firmino and Mohamed Salah for this failure seems an interesting tactic when Simon Mignolet may have played his last game in a Liverpool shirt after that performance.

But time moves onward and games keep coming and Liverpool faces their next challenge against Huddersfield tomorrow evening.

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