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GROUNDHOG DAY: Liverpool lose at Anfield for sixth successive game

 

Mario Lemina's goal was enough for battling to Fulham to pick up a massive three points at Anfield against Liverpool.

Mohamed Salah was caught out on the edge of his own box trying to control a loose ball.

Lemina swooped in to dispossess the Egyptian and nestled the ball in the bottom corner past Alisson Becker.

It's easy to forget that the Reds are the reigning champions after a miserable run of form since Christmas.

They've won just three league games since beating Crystal Palace 7-0 to top the table in late December.

Fulham were much the better side. Apart from Sadio Mane hitting the bar with a header and Diogo Jota's volley, Liverpool didn't trouble their opponents.

Everything they did in possession was slow and predictable as it has been at Anfield for months.

 

Groundhog day

 

Reds fans have seen this episode before.

Their team looks inefficient in attack, completely void of emphasis and ingenuity, while defensively they are vulnerable and tenuous.

Compared to their former selves, a team which dominated the Premier League and won the Champions League, they are lifeless.

Realistically, qualifying for European football at all, never mind the Champions League, is becoming something they cannot achieve if they continue to lose games.

 

 

 

Changes

 

Jurgen Klopp made seven changes pre-match, which included welcoming Diogo Jota back from injury.

Rhys Williams returned to the side at centre back and there were starts for James Milner and Naby Keita in midfield.

The Reds were without Trent Alexander Arnold and Sadio in the starting eleven with Neco Williams the preferred choice at right-back.

Roberto Firmino was left out of the squad due to injury.

There had been calls for tactical switches, but it was more personnel-related than any major shift in tactics.

Clearly, had this been a game of any real importance, Klopp wouldn't have made these changes.

All of their eggs are now in the Champions League basket. Without winning that, there won't be any European nights at Anfield next season when fans are scheduled to return.

 


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