Damon Savenelli explains what needs to happen before Liverpool can even think of the Premier League title.
Burnley 2-0 Liverpool. Bournemouth 4-3 Liverpool. Liverpool 2-2 West Ham. It’s results like these that will prevent Liverpool from winning the title.
Sunday night saw Klopp’s Reds wrestle a point away from West Ham in what can only be considered a disappointing result for the Merseyside outlet. It looked to be a simple three points against West Ham, who are currently struggling to stay above the relegation zone and have been in poor form as of late.
As Liverpool fans, we are used to this. Over the past few years, Liverpool have developed the habit of losing to lesser teams. Thus far, the 2016/17 campaign has seen the Reds drop points against the likes of Burnley, Bournemouth, and West Ham. The Reds only obtained one point out of these three fixtures when, let’s be honest, they should have grabbed all nine. Eight points may not seem like a lot now, but when the season is drawing to an end and the title race is heating up, those eight points will be missed dearly. It is hard to say but if this continues the Reds will not win the title.
This has been a Liverpool habit for some years now. Going back to May of 2014 when Brendan Rodgers’ squad drew 3-3 with Crystal Palace, seemingly ending all hope of winning the league. Last season saw Liverpool drop points against Newcastle, West Brom, and Crystal Palace. Yet again, this trend is rearing its ugly head once more. I get it, the Premier League is a competitive league where anything can happen, but champions are consistent. Champions keep their eye on the prize and do not let smaller teams get in their way.
Take a look at Leicester, for instance. Once they realised that they had a chance to win the title, they never missed a beat. The King Power Stadium turned into a fortress, and the Foxes looked unstoppable. The current Chelsea team is another good example. The Blues are on a title hunt and their consistency is holding strong. They steamrolled through the likes of Everton, Middlesbrough, West Ham, West Brom, and Southampton.
In my opinion, what makes a title contending team is not the quality of the players or manager, but the focus and commitment of the manager and his players. Finding consistency and never letting go, is what title chasing teams do. Liverpool no doubt have their quality of players to be proud of, but they lack the consistency.
There could be several reasons as to why this continues to happen. The current Liverpool defence is, in my opinion, not good enough. Joel Matip has been magnificent, but Lovren has been sub-par this season. At 23 years of age, Loris Karius lacks leadership qualities and has been making some very simple mistakes as of late.
It comes down to the players on the field focusing until the final whistle. It comes down to scoring that third or fourth goal that will put the game to bed. It comes down to the defence holding strong and not conceding an equaliser or winner. Until this happens the Reds will not win the league. It is as simple as that.