Momentum. The idea that, when you’re doing well, it builds confidence and makes it more likely you will continue to do well. Or that when you aren’t doing well the opposite happens and bad results begin to cause something of a negative feedback loop.
For many, it’s an over-valued idea in sports, not backed up by the numbers, but it remains something many fans, players, pundits, and coaches believe in, so it’s hardly a surprise that Jürgen Klopp was asked about it following last night’s 2-0 defeat to Chelsea.
“I am not worried about momentum,” was the manager’s response. “You can’t control when you have it, but we know we can get it back. Losing 2-0 is not so good, but easy to explain because we made two massive mistakes before their two goals.”
Klopp insists, though, that any feeling of momentum today, with Liverpool having lost three of five games since their mid-season break, isn’t an issue of anything especially nebulous or undefinable—it’s simply a reflection of a recent lack of defensive sharpness.
Whether or not momentum is a thing that exists and impacts results, Liverpool can get back to their winning ways by refocusing on the defensive side of their game that provided the foundation for so much of the good that came before this recent dip in form.
“Things have gone our way for so long because we defended well,” Klopp added. “Usually, teams don’t get a lot of chances against us, but in the last four games we have conceded far too many goals.”