Liverpool, England – This is every week, now, Liverpool loses another small piece of itself. An unbeaten home record, spanning more than three years, went missing in January, with Burnley keeping away. Enfield’s spirit as a fortress soon collapsed, coming in short order by Brighton and then a storm by Manchester City.
The golden end of the long-awaited Premier League crown, which arrived last summer, has been falling for some time, but darkened for good last week, while Jurgen Klopp won the Premier League title in the bitter grip of winter. .
And then, as firecrackers and car horns were played across Merseyside on Saturday evening, what came to be the most tragic change of all. Everton did not taste a win over Everton in this century. It had not won a derby in over a decade. For Liverpool, the impotence of its neighbor and rival was the source of such unbridled gaiety, which had long since been sealed in part of its self-identity.
But now, all of that too, is gone. Richardson outscored Everton after just three minutes. Carlo Ancelotti’s team held Liverpool at arm’s length with a degree of comfort, ducking at Flirt, only for the rest of the evening.
The only sign that Everton players knew they were close to making – or, perhaps, the end – history came in their ceremonies was when Gilefi Sigurdsson hit the game for 10 minutes to complete a 2–0 score line. Solved from the spot. The responses were hoarse and sure, a curse was raised to the sound. At the touchline, Duncan Ferguson, part of Everton’s clothes for nearly 20 years of magic, first as a player and now as a coach, bounced and roared.
Of course, Ancelotti and his players deserve praise and admiration for being accurate and praising their performance, but the approach that won them depends on a confluence of factors. The first thing, of course, is that your team needs to be focused and disciplined and organized: not really perfect at all.
Second, you should be, if not lucky, at least not inauspicious: even the most subtly laid plan can be undone by the unfortunate bounce of the ball, an arbitrary deflection, a moment of surprise.
And third, you need someone who loves your opponent. A team full of confidence and energy and ideas will, most often, choose a path through even the most efficient defense. Liverpool completely and absolutely lacked all of those things.
It is not difficult to say why Liverpool have topped so much this season. Klopp, of course, does not believe that there is any great mystery here. Liverpool hurt not only Virgil Van Dzek, but Joe Gomez and Joel Matip, tearing down their team’s defense base. Klopp had very few options for his defense to end his midfield.
But this is just the beginning. It has felt at times that everything that could have gone wrong for Liverpool this season has gone wrong. It is easy to list players who have not spent at least a few weeks in the treatment room: Andy Robertson, Georginio Visionaldum, Roberto Fermino, Mohammed Salah, Sadio Mane.
Fabinho is currently absent with his injury as the first midfielder drafted in defense. The second, Jordan Henderson, closed the first half Saturday with a groin injury. Alison Baker, widely regarded as one of the world’s best goalkeepers and a reassuring presence at Liverpool’s make-and-mind back line, made three stunning mistakes in defeating Manchester City and Leicester.
If the root of the problem does not require forensic investigation, however, it may react. Klopp has shown more irregular than usual this season, clashing with television reporters, clashing with reporters at news conferences, exchanging cross words with opposing managers.
When it was revealed earlier this month that she had endured a personal tragedy – the death of her mother – it seemed that she had offered an explanation for the change in mood. Klopp, however, acknowledges that he is capable Understand his feelings; Those who work with him say that there has been no real change. Klopp has always been stinging. What has changed is perception. Stress is a flexing of muscles from a position of strength. From a state of weakness, it looks like a tantrum.
In fact, it is striking, even what started as a dip has become a slump and now, on four consecutive home defeats – the club’s worst run since 1923 – the look of a spiral Hai, Liverpool have not demanded any change Sort.
This is true of the club as a whole – its failure to prepare for central defensive reinforcements to go on 1 January was the act of a club operating in the old world, not the new one – and this is especially true of Klopp. The style remains the same. The system has remained the same. On Friday, he said, “I know the only way to try it again and again.”
It was a statement. Klopp is the fanatic of what can be called a system coach: He There is a way to play that is baked into his soul. His counterparts at Everton, Anselotti, are the opposite: a manager who once coached Andrea Piro, but instructed Michael Caine and Ben Godfrey to expect the ball long and with hope, again, Is completely content in a different time. To hold the correct current in the air.
Such pragmatism is unfavorable to Klopp. Changing their style, so inseparably with their identity, would mean changing themselves. This is the feature that has made him such a success; However, it is possible that this may also limit it in some circumstances, as its loyalty to the system is being harmed when external factors mean that the system itself cannot function.
Klopp has experienced a run in this way – a period when it seems nothing is right – once before, in his last year at Borussia Dortmund. Then, his squad was also devastated by injuries. He Last season, it also dealt with the departure of a group of key players. He Refused to compromise his beliefs. Dortmund finished seventh and stepped down.
The echoes of that year grow stronger with each passing week in Liverpool, with every new and unwanted record. Liverpool continue to do the same thing, with a team beating their head against a brick wall, hoping for different results. It keeps losing all those little pieces of itself, lost in the shadow of an identity that cannot see the change.