Liverpool succumbed to a 2-0 defeat against Red Star Belgrade on Tuesday night and Graeme Souness has said that it’s Jurgen Klopp who should shoulder the blame.
A crucial miss from Daniel Sturridge in the beginning of the game set the tone for the way that Liverpool would go on against Red Star as they looked weak in defence and abysmal in attack.
Mohamed Salah might have hit the post late on but it was a rare big chance in a game which really exposed Liverpool’s need to sign a top class creative midfielder in January to have any chance of winning silverware this season.
Graeme Souness believes that the blame for how things went so badly wrong in Serbia must rest with Klopp.
“I think not starting with Firmino or Joe Gomez,” the pundit told Virgin Media One when asked where it went wrong for his former club. “The fact they were on the bench and came on half time suggests they were fine so it wasn’t them carrying something.
“I think the message it sends to the rest of the players was, ‘You won 4-0 last time we’ll be fine again tonight.’
“I’m of the belief you start with your strongest team, get the game won and then get off the players you want to rest.
“I think that message by not picking your strongest team to start with would have an effect with some of the players who did start.
“They weren’t at it. They didn’t start right and when you don’t start right, it really is an uphill battle to get the momentum back again.
“I felt they handed the momentum to Red Star and they managed to keep it for the rest of the game.
“They’re not at the level they were at last year, Liverpool.”