Liverpool frus­trated by bat­tling Burn­ley, 1-1

Kuwait Times - - FRONT PAGE -

The sight of Vir­gil van Dijk reap­pear­ing in Southamp­ton colours on the same day that Liverpool suf­fered an­other de­fen­sive calamity hardly im­proved the mood of An­field sup­port­ers start­ing to ques­tion man­ager Juer­gen Klopp’s meth­ods.

The fail­ure to buy the Dutch cen­tre half-or any­one else as an al­ter­na­tive-re­mains a sore point on Mersey­side where Liverpool’s sub­stan­dard de­fence was ex­posed for the third match run­ning in a 1-1 Premier League draw with Burn­ley.

No one blamed De­jan Lovren yes­ter­day be­cause the Croa­t­ian, who was badly at fault in con­ced­ing Sevilla’s Cham­pi­ons League equaliser on Wed­nes­day, was in­jured, but his re­place­ment fared lit­tle bet­ter.

Rag­ner Kla­van, and part­ner Joel Matip, were crit­i­cised af­ter fail­ing to clear the ball and al­low­ing Burn­ley to score. That left the home side fac­ing an up­hill strug­gle to se­cure the win de­manded af­ter last week’s thrash­ing by Manch­ester City and the dis­ap­point­ing mid­week draw.

Klopp did his best to put a pos­i­tive spin on the re­sult but it is again hard to look be­yond the club’s fail­ure to solve their re­cur­ring prob­lems in cen­tral de­fence. The man­ager said he was “an­gry with the re­sult but pleased with the per­for­mance” af­ter Liverpool failed to make their sub­se­quent dom­i­nance pay.

“It’s our fault. We were dom­i­nant, fan­tas­tic at­ti­tude. We played good, were flu­ent with seven changes, but only one goal,” added Klopp, who re­called that last sea­son Burn­ley beat them 2-0 at Turf Moor.

“It’s the best we have played against Burn­ley since I have been in. In the past we didn’t feel good in the game. To­day I saw fluid move­ments, pass­ing be­tween the lines, speed, crosses,” added Klopp, whose side reg­is­tered 35 ef­forts at goal to the Clarets’ five and en­joyed 70 per­cent of pos­ses­sion.

“We have to take the point and carry on.” Klopp’s mid­week as­ser­tion that his scouts had been un­con­vinced af­ter watch­ing po­ten­tial al­ter­na­tives to their main tar­get Van Dijk about “500 mil­lion times” at­tracted scorn on so­cial me­dia with some fans com­plain­ing that the Ger­man was start­ing to sound like for­mer man­ager Bren­dan Rodgers in his fi­nal days.

Even the sight of Philippe Coutinho start­ing his first game of the sea­son hardly lifted the mood with Klopp’s case prob­a­bly not helped by a pa­rade of for­mer Liverpool greats be­fore kick­off as the club marked their 125th an­niver­sary, a cel­e­bra­tion that only high­lighted the cur­rent prob­lems. Ul­ti­mately, Klopp will be mea­sured against the achieve­ments of the past, which is never far away from An­field. With the club al­ready five points be­hind lead­ers Manch­ester City, it is start­ing to look like a long, hard win­ter for the Ger­man. - Reuters

AN­FIELD: Burn­ley’s Scott Ar­field , cen­tre and Liverpool’s James Mil­ner bat­tle for the ball dur­ing the English Premier League soc­cer match be­tween Liverpool and Burn­ley, at An­field, in Liverpool, Eng­land, yes­ter­day. — AP

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