How Klopp can reinvigorate Liverpool: a back-three and wait for Bellingham…

·13-min read
Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp talks to Mo Salah. Credit: PA Images
Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp talks to Mo Salah. Credit: PA Images

The Mailbox has some suggestions for Jurgen Klopp as the Liverpool manager looks for answers over his side’s slide. Also: Arsenal and the narrative police…

Het your views in to theeditor@football365.com

 

Liverpool shape
Have a lie-down in a dark quiet room all you Klopp-outers, he’s not going anywhere (hopefully). All the social media click whores may have a reason for this sort of hyperventilating bollocks but you don’t have to fall for it.

Yes, it was a mistake not to sign a midfielder or two this summer but January will soon be here and that will be put right. The new Brighton manager will want some cash to bring in his own players and we’ve apparently already made a big offer for Caceido.

In the meantime there are other options to plug some holes. A change of shape perhaps. A back three and wingbacks would bring more solidity. That would suit Trent better anyway. In midfield Fabinho holding and Thiago as well leaves one spot to fill from Elliot, Carvalho, Arthur, Henderson when healthy, Keita if he isn’t lost to a witness protection program somewhere, and possibly a redeployment of Diaz, Jota, and Firmino as a ten or the tip of a diamond. Up top a front two of Mo and Darwin spelling off with Diaz and Jota and/or Firmino. Lots of rotation should amp up the energy to respark the gegenpress. There are lots of options to hand for Klopp.

The point is all we need do is stay in the race for top four until January when we can make a signing or two. Make the top four at the end of the year and with Klopp as manager and FSG flush with cash and desperate to sign him, and we have a decent shot at signing Bellingham.

But no Klopp, no Bellingham. No Klopp and we no longer dine at the top table of prospects and we’re right back to where we were in the dark days before Jurgen. So stuff your effing whinging before he gets fed up and walks.
CanuckLFC

 

Liverpool’s worst defeats under Jurgen Klopp and how the Reds responded

 

…While Liverpool haven’t had a great start to the season the Napoli game was their worst. But it’s not because Klopp is a busted flush or because ‘teams have worked them out’ and Klopp isn’t changing things.

The reality is that Klopp was looking to change things by bringing in Nunez to play with Diaz. Along with Carvalho, Liverpool could go to a 4-2-3-1 to change things up. But midfield injuries and Nunez’s sending off haven’t helped. It takes a few games to get a new system working and they haven’t had a chance to do that yet.

Liverpool is driven by a very mobile and active midfield, pressing, counter-pressing, covering the full backs, all take energy but, more so, a real understanding of where everyone should be at all times. Elliott has done well, Carvalho will do better but Milner is definitely not able to start and play a full 90 minutes and certainly not against a high tempo team like Napoli. Matip also seems to have a better sense of position than Gomez and gives more support to TAA. With Thiago and Matip back, and Arthur able to play some minutes and offload Fabinho, we’ll see Liverpool start to get back on track.

As more come off the injured list, especially with an international break soon, and the youngsters coming through, it isn’t time to get all panicky.

I wrote recently about how long Potter should wait to get a top job. While I am pleased to see him get his reward, disappointed it’s with Chelsea. Felt he would have been a great Klopp replacement Klopp’s contract is up. Be interesting to see if Chelsea’s history of getting rewards from new managers continue. Tuchel did win a CL and got to two finals and a top 4 last year.

In the meantime, Ten Hag’s United bubble burst a little with a midweek loss.

Imagine going to work and half the office applaud your work one week and then want you gone the next and back to applause the following week. Would do your brain in. But that’s the everyday world of a top level football manager. But they do get some very, very big money for it…
Paul McDevitt

Is Salah to blame?
Not much has changed since Liverpool nearly won everyting a few months ago. Mane has gone, sure, a number of injuries, sure. But is this enough to cause the very obvious downing tools of players who only 10 weeks ago (pre salah wage increase) were at the top of their game, Trent, Van Dyke, Fabino, Robertson and Henderson. Trents work rate is,…. well it isnt, there is none, bet past him and he starts to walk along, out on a sunday stroll. The heart is gone from this team. The unity is gone from this team. Wonder what could have caused that?
Keith, pool fan

 

Madness
Has everyone gone insane? Klopp Out? The players are mediocre? Has everyone forgotten that this is the team that a matter of months ago was in the running for every single competition right until the end, and came within a point of winning the league?? The same players (minus Mane). We look poor, sure. But Klopp has earned more than enough leeway for us to wait it out and give him a shot to turn things around, however long it takes. The journey of the last few years wouldn’t have existed with any other manager in charge. The guy should take all the time he needs, no other manager is going to suddenly give us long term success. Madness….
Pav, LFC, New York

 

…”That ‘Klopp out?’ is a question that can no longer be summarily dismissed with a disbelieving snicker speaks volumes. This is veering towards something drastic.”

No. No. No. No. And might I add, no.

I am hereby summarily dismissing this with a disbelieving snicker. This is the kind of nonsense I expect on Twitter, not here.

We’ve got issues. They might not be easy to solve. But he absolutely is the man to fix it. We’ve got Matip, Konate, Thiago, Jota all coming back to bolster the squad/11. A recruitment plan is clearly in place (that we signed Arthur on loan clearly means there are plans for next summer). A stadium that is about to be boosted in capacity to increase revenue once again. We just need to ride it out and get behind the team. No team can win all the time. Peaks and troughs are part of professional sport.

Now is not the time for knee-jerk. You’ll all feel very silly come May.

Cheers,
Marc


…Ahh the fair weather friends. I cannot believe any true Liverpool supporters would be calling for Klopp’s head after a few bad games. The same manager that has won everything there is to win, who bought us back last season from a poor season before and shows he has the tools to change things when they turn bad, this same manager is whom they want sacked! How many times have we seen fans call for sacking and then the club falls apart? Look at ManU, look how long Arsenals’ been rebuilding. Fire the proven manager for the shiny new one! Just crazy. Sorry but in Klopp I trust. I’d have to see at least a whole season of under performance by us before talking about firing the best manager we’ve had in 30+ years. We aren’t Chelsea! Let’s see how Chelsea progress being trigger happy
Anthony (LFC for life) McFarlane.

 

Arsenal and the narrative police
I hate to keep railing on and on about false Arsenal narratives but seriously can people just stop it with this “Arsenal are going to struggle with Europe this season…” BS? We’ve had weaker squads IMO do just fine (2011-2013 squads in particular come to mind) in securing top 4 and advancing to the round of 16 of the CL..only to get promptly smacked. But still, navigating the CL is much harder obviously. I will admit that the league was surely weaker back then in terms of quality both in terms of the collective squads and just individual players on display now. I mean Haaland just came and is already the best striker in the league over Kane just by joining IMO. Not sure the overall grind was any less, however.

Also, someone on F365, mailbox or otherwise, or one of these pundits (Rio, Carra) is gonna have to do a detailed analysis comparing squad depth for each position between Arsenal, Spurs and United cause I’m really not seeing where their “clear advantage” is.

I was actually going to write in regarding the above even before Marquinhos’, as the Guardian put it, “revelatory” display but waited as to not jinx anything. Yes, yes, let’s not (especially not us) get ahead of ourselves. That being said, Saka (starting out as a LB for those who still fail to see the transformation we’ve undergone in a relatively short amount of time), Martinelli, and ESR all shone in this competition before going on to make their full international debuts (for top ranked int’l squads) not too long after and establishing themselves as key cogs in a side that currently sits atop the league (probably not for long but whatever).

Also, I see F365 continuing to bang on the “Arsenal transfer losers” narrative due to the one singular f***ing con you could possibly find in what was otherwise, by all accounts, brilliant transfer business. Look, I get it 1. Partey can’t stay healthy 2. Elneny, while reliable, is just that – Elneny 3. Xhaka can’t be relied on there 4. As we’ve just seen at United (and in Zurich tbh), Lokonga is not natural there.

Now, what I’m about to say doesn’t mean we don’t need a dedicated holding midfield player to compete with Partey (or one even better but that’s a different mail) but we did intentionally go after Lisandro Martinez (why are we not getting credit for almost pulling this off given the season he’s having so far?) because, unlike Zinchenko, his midfield role would have been as a holding midfield player. This also goes back to our overall transfer strategy that has been outlined by Fab Romano many times – we have identified well-researched targets, the price we are willing to pay for them and are moving extremely deliberately.

This is miles off the last half of Wenger (after everyone had already well caught up with him) and the ridiculous approach of the team put together to succeed him. I mentioned earlier how the club has been undergoing a transformation. I mentioned in a previous mail about how that triple sub was bigger than just any one game tactic. So was every single aspect of our transfer business – including those we did not buy.

The fact that we didn’t get that holding mid and winger is a byproduct of a very deliberate strategy that obviously isn’t necessarily going to make sense to everyone as it unfolds in real time. Not sure what’s so difficult about taking a step back and a more holistic view of things – another theme of mine recently.
MAW, LA Gooner (Speaking of transformations, just a little over two years ago Reiss Nelson started at RW in a Liverpool victory. He’s now at best our third choice in that position. Not a deep field but none of the candidates are older than 23…)

Chelsea need time
I cannot believe the shortsighted comments emanating from the likes of “football experts” like Carragher, Merson et al regarding the potential appointment of Graham Potter and the firing of Tuchel. As a Chelsea fun I’m actually delighted at his dismissal, especially after he let go one of my favourite up and coming players Billy Gilmour (ironically to Potter and Brighton). Clearly Potter saw the great potential he had whereas Tuchel never gave the lad a look-in. I know many CFC fans are steaming at the club allowing him to leave and for peanuts. Tuchel let other good young academy players leave too who all are doing well in the Premier league. That was the last straw for me as far as Tuchel is concerned. It summed up his biased and stubborn ways. Also he was central to us yet again wasting tons of money on so so signings whilst letting quality players like Billy leave for nothing.

Aside from that, his record in the Premier league recently was no better than Frank Lampard. In fact the last 16 games of his reign would have seen Chelsea in 8th place in the league, hardly the stuff of a top coach, having some of the best players in the world in his squad and the best academy in England and having spent £278 million in the process. The other point rarely mentioned regarding Tuchel is the dramatic loss of form after his separation during last season from his spouse and kids. It seems results went downhill from that point on.

I read that Carragher would have appointed Pochettino! He is supposed to be an expert so why would he recommend a proven runner up everywhere he’s been! Tuchel had a far superior record at PSG and got them to the CL final where Poch failed even with the World’s top forward line. At Spurs he snatched defeat from the jaws of victory in losing what should have been a Premiership title and then bottled the CL final. Even in a one horse race at PSG he didn’t do that great either. Some expert Carragher is. The same goes for Merson. He seems to have lost his marbles lately and doesn’t seem to recognise that the Chelsea owners want to move in a different direction and hire someone they can work with who has an holistic view of how to run a club. As such they have identified Potter and I think this is a good choice. Merson rabbiting on about Zidane is just short sighted nonsense. He would have been a poor facsimile for past appointees to the job. Give Boehly some credit. He has successfully run US franchises and knows the sort of personnel he wants and Tuchel clearly didn’t tick those boxes as Potter doubtless will. Zidane, who has already said in the past that he has no interest in the premier league certainly wouldn’t. These new owners are not fools and do their homework. Just give them time.
Martin

United’s problem
Ok, let me begin by saying I’m no expert in football but it is becoming increasingly clear that the real problem at United is the most expensive English defender and the greatest player of all time.
Robbie DFC
*damn it turner it just doesn’t make sense

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