Liverpool’s early days under German boss Jurgen Klopp promised much with some outstanding performances and results in games at Chelsea and Manchester City in particular.
However the Klopp revolution has hit the buffers after the Reds suffered a 3-0 defeat at Watford on Sunday.
The Hornets were brilliant, with the energetic Odion Ighalo grabbing a brace and defender Nathan Ake also getting on the scoresheet.
Watford may have been superb, but for Liverpool the current run of three Premier League games without a win, including two defeats is a reality check.
Papering over the cracks
The lift that Jurgen Klopp’s arrival gave the club just helped to paper over the cracks in the Liverpool squad and team. The Reds were struggling in the league before Klopp’s arrival and it was not all the fault of the hapless Brendan Rodgers.
The squad was full of mediocre and overpriced players. Rodgers had spent big, but not necessarily well in his spell at the club. That means like any new manager Klopp is attempting to build a team with somebody else’s players.
On his arrival Klopp claimed he was happy with the players at his disposal, but the German must be eying up potential arrivals in January, because his current squad are underperforming. The Reds are not going to get back to where they want to be with the current group of players.
Klopp needs time to get things right
Jurgen Klopp is a great innovator and showed at Dortmund that he does not need major finances to engineer a winning team. What Klopp does need to play his high-pressing, possession based football are the right players.
Klopp knows exactly what he wants from his players and he will know which players he wants to keep and which players he wants to sell. There is unlikely to be major changes in the winter transfer window though.
The former-Dortmund boss may attempt to bring in one or two new players in in January, as he looks to rediscover that style of play that saw his team hammer Manchester City earlier in his reign at Anfield.
Klopp is an intense guy, who will not take the Reds current run of poor lightly. Three games without a win may not be a crisis, but there are signs that the players are just not really at the races at the moment.
You cannot make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear and that is akin to what the German boss is attempting to do at Anfield with the current players.
The right man for the job at Anfield
For me Jurgen Klopp was the perfect fit for the Liverpool job. He was a high-profile, highly-talented boss who needed a new project to get his teeth into. Some may suggest that he may have bitten off more than he can chew.
However Klopp enjoyed a similar situation at Dortmund. When he arrived they had endured a few years of mediocrity. Liverpool is a club that has been starved of a league title in the Premier League era.
The German has been brought in with the ultimate aim of restoring Liverpool to the pinnacle of the English game. His first aim is to get the Reds back into the top four, which they are currently odds of 6/4 to achieve this season.
The open nature of the Premier League means that the Reds are still in with a chance of making the top four, but on current form there will not be many rushing to put that bet on. There is also a cluster of teams with the same ambition this season.
It seems that most Liverpool fans will be patient with Klopp, because of his reputation and his calibre. The real Liverpool fans tend to be realistic and knowledgeable enough to know that it will take time for the German to get things right on Merseyside.
This season will be one of major transition and the real acid test of Klopp’s Liverpool will be next season when the affable Reds boss has had his first pre-season and has been able to bring in his own players.
Have Liverpool made progress under Jurgen Klopp?