"We have to deserve it" - Liverpool midfielder laments dropped points against Newcastle

Liverpool midfielder Thiago Alcântara believes his team failed in "the essence of sport" when they did not seal the win against Newcastle. Thiago, of course, was discussing The Reds' many missed chances in front of goal after going 1-0 ahead as early as the third minute. Mohamed Salah scored a beautiful strike to put Jürgen Klopp's men ahead early doors. However, countless more missed opportunities from Sadio Mané, Diogo Jota, Roberto Firmino, and Salah, meant Liverpool were hanging on for …
Assessing Thiago's debut season with Liverpool

Assessing Thiago's debut season with Liverpool

There’s no guide out there on how to use stats in football. Maybe there should be. After all, a stat without context is just a number. Mainstream media has been forced into embracing this part of the sport over recent seasons. They initially resisted, but it quickly became a case of adapt or perish.  As a result, you now regularly see questionable usage of stats in articles written by old-school journalists who have very little experience with numbers.  There’s nothing …
Jurgen Klopp and His Naby Keita Conundrum

Jurgen Klopp and His Naby Keita Conundrum

Naby Keita joined Liverpool with much fanfare in the summer of 2018. The Reds pursued the Guinean for the entirety of the summer of 2017, but with his club Red Bull Leipzig, reluctant to sell, a compromise was reached that the English club would pay a £10M premium and sign the midfielder the following summer. Given Keita's imperious two-season stint in the Bundesliga -- he also played Champions League football in his second season in Saxony -- it was easy …
Analysis: Liverpool's midfield conundrum

Analysis: Liverpool's midfield conundrum

For a while now, it has felt as though Liverpool have been assembling what could best be described as a Swiss Army midfield.  Jurgen Klopp has referenced it recently. Firstly, against Chelsea, he implied that James Milner got the nod ahead of Naby Keita for his leadership qualities and not for footballing reasons.  Then, ahead of the first-leg tie against Real Madrid, Klopp explained the reasoning behind Keita’s inclusion in the starting XI: "Real [Madrid] kind of man-mark, so you …
4231 Formation The Next Tactical Port of Call For Liverpool

4231 Formation The Next Tactical Port of Call For Liverpool

Ever since the beginning of the 2016/2017 season, Jurgen Klopp has almost consistently lined Liverpool up in a 433 formation. The only exception came in the winter of the 2018/2019 season when the Reds lined up in a 4231 shape. In that reshuffle, Mohamed Salah played as the teams' focal point, with Roberto Firmino dropping into the number 10 role. Xherdan Shaqiri, meanwhile, in his most productive run at the club, added creativity from a right-wing berth. Klopp soon reverted …
The truth about Thiago and his pressing

The truth about Thiago and his pressing

The arrival of Thiago was supposed to give Liverpool a Plan B. The fear was that the opposition would soon find a way to limit the influence of the full-backs and that the Reds might get found out. However, injuries and Covid robbed Jurgen Klopp of his No.6 for the best part of half of the season. To complicate things even further, Thiago’s involvement with the first-team coincides with the Reds having their worst run of form under the German …
The Thiago & Fabinho Partnership: The Midfield of Liverpool's Future

The Thiago & Fabinho Partnership: The Midfield of Liverpool's Future

Finally, for the first time since October, Fabinho played as a defensive midfielder in Liverpool's 2-0 Champions League last 16 win over Red Bull Leipzig. The Brazilian, who, due to the Reds' huge injury toll, had operated in the centre half role for the majority of the season. The 27-year-old mostly excelled in the heart of the defence, but he was sorely missed in the engine room. But with the signing of Ozan Kabak -- not to mention Ben Davies, …
Thiago hails teammate as

Thiago hails teammate as "awesome to play alongside" after Liverpool progress in Champions League

Liverpool's Thiago Alcântara was signing the praises of Fabinho after The Reds' progressed to the quarter-final stages of the Champions League. Fabinho was back in his more natural defensive-midfield role as Jürgen Klopp's men beat Bundesliga side, RB Leipzig, 2-0 in Budapest, going through 4-0 on aggregate. Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mané were the scorers, as they were in the first leg back in February. However, it was Fabinho's performance in front of the inexperienced centre-back pairing of Nat Phillips …
MOTM Fabinho raises levels as Liverpool advance in Europe

MOTM Fabinho raises levels as Liverpool advance in Europe

Jurgen Klopp hailed the joy of seeing "the best number six in the world" back in his favourite position, as Fabinho put in a Man of the Match display throughout Liverpool's 2-0 win over Leipzig on Wednesday night. Courtesy of goals from Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane, Liverpool rode to a 4-0 aggregate win over the in-form German side, casting aside Premier League concerns to move into the Champions League quarter finals. Unlike the first leg, where Liverpool weren't brilliant …
Liverpool 2-0 Leipzig (4-0 aggregate): Player ratings as Reds march on

Liverpool 2-0 Leipzig (4-0 aggregate): Player ratings as Reds march on

There will be attempts to dampen this initially torturous, eventually comfortable victory. Leipzig, it will be said, are the ideal opponents for this one-dimensional iteration of Liverpool. The depleted Reds' prospects of going all the way in the competition will be written off. However valid those reservations, this win offers supporters a precious feeling of contentment for, at the very least, four days. It is serene respite from the unrelenting domestic misery. Liverpool kept the tie alive as long as …
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