Liverpool Football Club hadn’t played a league game in a month, ending their campaign for that extended period on the disappointing note of a 0-0 draw in the Merseyside derby. They returned against Brighton & Hove Albion on Saturday with another draw, albeit a more entertaining one.
Going from 2-0 to 3-2 and finally ending the match at 3-3, the Reds dropped two more crucial points in the league. Right now, it seems like they might have a tough road just to make the top four this season. Any lost points feel extremely important when they are already languishing in ninth place after the first seven games.
Jürgen Klopp, when asked about his team’s difficulties so far, compared this current situation to the dire one that Liverpool faced two years ago.
“Yes, we have to improve,” Klopp said. “We have to play better, consistently better; defend better, attack better, pretty much everything. It’s like it is. I don’t want to talk too much about it but it’s really like this – it’s only two years ago we had a very similar situation for different reasons where we lost our full defence, our centre-halves, all of them pretty much, and had to find solutions.
“We lost our game completely, nobody could recognise [us] anymore, we just wore the same shirts. But couldn’t react as quick as people could wish. But we found a way out because we worked on it and that’s what we will do this time.”
Two years ago, Liverpool pushed through a truly miserable winter in order to claw their way back into a Champions League spot on the last day. This time, the crisis hit far earlier, which could mean that they have longer to pull themselves out it. It could also mean that they have farther to fall if they can’t. However, the lingering question mark over this season for everyone is the World Cup set to take place right during what would usually be the busiest point in the season.
Which players will return injured, worn out, or with broken spirits? It’s impossible to know now. That makes it hard to judge exactly how bad this poor start will be for Liverpool’s season.