As much as we pride ourselves in our wins, we do know how to take defeat on the chin. It’s only our first game of the Champions League, so it’s not the end of the world. However, there is going to be much improvement needed to our midfielders if we have a chance of claiming both titles.
After our 2-0 defeat to Napoli, Liverpool fans took to Twitter to express their frustrations about our midfield. The main criticism seems to be around Klopp’s decision to start with the Milner-Henderson-Fabinho:
A player with the quality of Fabinho, deserves to play with better CM’s around him. It’s a one man show in midfield.
— HE'S VIRGIL VAN DIJK 🇳🇱 (@Patrickkk1997) September 17, 2019
Surely Klopp has worked out at this stage Henderson and Milner are horrible together in midfield, surely we won’t see them together in there again, surely😳
— John O Sullivan (@Corballyred) September 17, 2019
Henderson and Milner in the same midfield never works, neither are particularly creative and bring similar attributes to the table, so we end up having very little attacking threat, especially because Trent and Robbo are more subdued in Europe.
— Moves_Like_Salah (@MovesLikeSa11ah) September 17, 2019
I’m not going to lie- Milner-Henderson-Fabinho is not my favourite formula. If I was Klopp, I would have started had Wijnaldum on instead of Milner.
Not that I have anything against Milner, it’s just that I believe he provides a different style of play to Wijnaldum. For instance, Wijnaldum is shown to press more and help Henderson provide long balls; on the other hand, Milner is better as a defensive midfielder. The amount of tackles and fouls he put in tonight proved that. If we got the goals in the first half, then maybe we should have introduced Milner into the second.
This was not the only element fans became frustrated with, as our front three got a bit of the blame:
So we can blame that ridiculous call at least partly. Still, can't believe Mane fumbled that easy pass to Salah for a tap-in. And Firmino really struggled after playing so well recently. Just an off night obviously but it cost us.
— David Comerford ⚽️🏁 (@Dave_Comerford) September 17, 2019
Mane, Salah and Firmino cost liverpool the game today. Those 3 need to sort themselves out and start working as a team again!
— Teddy Mkhari (@teddymkhari) September 17, 2019
I don’t think our front three performed poorly, they were just unfortunate with some of the shots and passes made. It didn’t help either that Napoli’s defence was like a fortress (imagine if we had Koulibaly teamed up with van Dijk). However, I do agree that the chemistry was lacking a little today- could it be exhaustion from Newcastle and the international break?
There’s nothing we can do about it now, it’s over and done with. I’m sure the team are just as gutted as you or I, but they just have to learn from their mistakes.
Right now, we should put all our attention in supporting the Reds against Chelsea.