Sunday afternoon saw Liverpool overturn an early deficit to beat Spurs 2-1 at Anfield. The Reds were in control from the first minute onwards. After 47 seconds Harry Kane put the visitors in the lead, nodding in a ball that had been deflected off both Dejan Lovren and the post. The first half against Spurs showed that Jürgen Klopp needs to shake up the midfield.
After going behind, Liverpool piled relentless pressure onto the Spurs goal. For large portions of the first half the Reds domination of possession meant nothing. Klopp’s side weren’t productive with the ball, the front three were far too narrow and Spurs were pressing the ball well on the edge of the box.
Mauricio Pochettino’s side seemed to have figured out how to defend against this Liverpool side. They sat deep and compact, their defenders knew their triggers for when to press and this made it difficult for the Reds to break them down, particularly when the front three sat on the deep lying centre halves. Roberto Firmino ended up having to come to near the halfway line in order to get the ball to his feet.
This shouldn’t be the case and Klopp at some point must realise that this low, compact block against the Liverpool attack has become the norm – Man United even employed the tactic at Old Trafford. When we face a side digging in in this fashion we need Naby Keita or Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain. Gini Wijnaldum was pretty much anonymous before he was substituted in the 77th minute.
Jürgen Klopp needs to shuffle his midfield and throw in Keita or The Ox in order to provide the dribbling ability and flair that we need to break sides down when they sit back against us. Fabinho is the best defensive midfielder in the world, he can handle not playing with two conservative midfielders in front of him.