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Wasteful Liverpool could struggle to finish in top 4

Liverpool dropped points once again in the Premier League.
Liverpool dropped points once again in the Premier League.
ANALYST
Modified 26 Apr 2021
Feature

Liverpool’s underwhelming run at Anfield continues unabated, as they were held to a disappointing draw at home against Newcastle United in the Premier League on Saturday.

The Reds have been in wobbly form in recent weeks, winning just one of their last five matches in all competitions. While they started Saturday’s game against the Magpies on the ascendency, they failed to capitalise on their chances.

An early goal from Mohamed Salah, scored in the third minute, was cancelled out by a last-minute strike from Arsenal loanee Joe Willock, much to the frustration of the Liverpool faithful.

It has been a torrid campaign for Jurgen Klopp and his charges, who have gone from Premier League champions to a side struggling to break into the top four.

Liverpool made to pay for their wastefulness

Liverpool had the perfect start against Newcastle and, in truth, should have closed the game out. However, they were unsurprisingly wasteful up front.

Klopp made his intentions clear when he named Salah, Sadio Mane, Roberto Firmino and Diogo Jota in an attacking starting line-up. However, his forwards couldn’t live up to the billing.

What was expected to be a festival of goals soon became a competition between Liverpool’s attackers over who could miss the most chances. Salah, Mane, Firmino and Jota were all responsible for missing some glaring scoring opportunities.

Liverpool were deservedly made to pay for their profligacy in front of goal when Willock came off the bench to snatch a priceless draw for Newcastle at the death.

Top four slipping away from Liverpool

Liverpool may have started the season as favourites to win the Premier League, but as things stand, they could even miss out on the top four.

The Reds find themselves in sixth position in the league table and four points behind fourth-placed Chelsea, who are flying high under Thomas Tuchel.

“We had to keep the ball. In a specific way we didn't fight enough. Keep ourselves in a position where we dominate the game. We had 70% of the ball; we should have had 80%. We created a lot of chances, didn’t score with them, so we have to create more,” Klopp said after the game, as quoted by the Guardian. That is how it is. We are not doing that well at the moment. It feels like a defeat. If you deserve, you deserve it. I didn’t see us deserve it today, playing Champions League next year.”

Liverpool’s chances of qualifying for next season’s Champions League are gradually slipping away. There’s very little they can do about that after such abysmal performances.

Published 26 Apr 2021
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