Various reports are suggested Bayern Munich midfielder Mario Gotze could join Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp at Anfield next season, such is his connection with Klopp during their time at Borussia Dortmund. Liverpool are favorites to capture his signature, but why do the Reds continue to overlook defensive options in favour of attacking ones?
Liverpool consistently leak goals in the Premier League
It’s been a constant problem for Liverpool in recent years, with their defensive record not really brought up by the masses, so the board instead pursue big name signings to give them extra options in the attack. The extent of Liverpool’s porous backline is staggering, with the Merseysiders having conceded 265 goals in the last six-and-a-half seasons.
It’s been six years since they conceded under 40 Premier League goals in a season, but this campaign could see them setting an unwanted record for most conceded if they fail to amend their current ratio of 1.38 goals shipped-per-game. They have once again struggled for goals too, but the biggest problem is how easily sides are ripping up their defence.
Klopp’s start at Liverpool hasn’t gone to plan
50 goals conceded from 38 games is Liverpool’s worst record since the turn of the millennium, but they are just 10 goals adrift with nine games to go. Manager Jurgen Klopp has endured a troubled start in charge of Liverpool, suffering defeats to the likes of Crystal Palace, Newcastle United and Watford. The Reds are in good form of late, however, winning three of their last four games in the Premier League.
Nevertheless, it’s clear Liverpool have underlying problems that aren’t being addressed. It’s not just about signing better defenders, it’s about the side being collectively difficult to play through. That starts with the position of the forwards and the tactical discipline of the midfield. Klopp needs to find a number of players in all positions that can make the difference in this regard, something easier said than done.
Summer overhaul on the cards?
Liverpool’s goalkeeper Simon Mignolet has come under intense criticism for his performances, having recently topped a chart from most goals conceded from shots on target in the Premier League. He’s one player who could consider his future in the summer. Defender Martin Skrtel might be the next out the door following a season of woeful performances and left-back Alberto Moreno may follow.
Liverpool are full of technical players in their midfield, but have few viable long-term defensive options that actively seek to nullify the opposition. Lucas Leiva is the man attributed to such a defensive outlook, but he’s somewhat on his own and it’s perhaps no surprise Liverpool concede so many goals when they focus more on their technical and attacking capabilities rather than defensive stability.