Sunday, December 17, 2017

Liverpool need a Lukaku or Kane, Redknapp claims

SoccerNews in English Premier League 13 Oct 2017

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Liverpool’s defensive personnel and organisation have not been good enough this season, says Jamie Redknapp, who also pointed to the lack of a top-tier centre-forward as a cause of their problems.

Supporters of the Merseyside giants had hoped to see the Reds produce a strong start to what is manager Jurgen Klopp’s second full campaign in charge.

Instead they have been typically inconsistent, dispatching fellow heavyweights Arsenal 4-0 only to lose 5-0 at Manchester City in their next Premier League outing.

Liverpool finished fourth last season to return to the Champions League but did not convincingly reinforce at the back in the transfer window, notably failing to lure prime target Virgil van Dijk away from Southampton. 

Speaking to Omnisport, former Liverpool midfielder Redknapp offered a less-than-favourable assessment of the team’s efforts in 2017-18.

“It’s been OK. It hasn’t been great,” he said.

“With all the frailties, all the problems we knew would be there. For instance, the defending isn’t good enough. That’s why he wanted to buy a centre-back for £60million. 

“Unfortunately, when you don’t get that player it unsettles the rest of the defence. They have defended poorly. 

“And they haven’t really got that out-and-out goalscorer. Daniel Sturridge isn’t in the form that he’d like to be. 

“You need someone that’s going to be like [Romelu] Lukaku or [Harry] Kane that’s going to get you 25 goals a season. They haven’t really got that player at the moment.”

Asked if the manager’s tactics or the players at his disposal are to blame for Liverpool’s defensive woes, Redknapp said: “I honestly think it’s a bit of both. But the personnel isn’t good enough. 

“People talk about the full-backs pushing on too much, exposing the centre-backs. But if you look at Manchester City, their full-backs push on but their centre-backs don’t get as exposed as what Liverpool’s do. 

“I don’t think we’ve got that defensive-minded midfield player either, like Fernandinho, that they’ve got at Manchester City. It’s a mixture of things but there’s no doubt at all the personnel isn’t good enough.”

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