Former Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher believes there are big problems at Anfield as his old side continue to wilt against physical opposition…
Yesterday’s 3-1 defeat at Crystal Palace leaves Liverpool with just one point from their last four Premier League fixtures.
Consequently this is now the club’s worst start to a league campaign in over 20 years and they are closer to the relegation zone than the Champions League places.
To many observers, in addition to individual defensive mistakes and injuries, a lack of desire and commitment has been a big contributing factor, especially in the defeats to Palace, Newcastle United, West Ham United and Aston Villa.
One man well-placed to pass judgement and who wholeheartedly agrees is ex-Reds centre-back Jamie Carragher.
The 36-year-old spent his entire career at Anfield, before retiring in the summer of 2013, and played for under-fire Kop boss Brendan Rodgers during his final season in the game.
“Liverpool aren’t being beaten by quality, they’re getting bullied,” analysed Carragher to Sky Sports after the final whistle at Selhurst Park. “They’re getting beaten by enthusiasm.
“This is more than just a poor start, there’s something wrong. Something’s not right, they’re getting bullied out of games.
“As a fan watching your own team the worst thing you can ever think of them is being bullied and being weak – that’s what we saw from Liverpool and not for the first time. It’s been going on all season.
“There’s no leadership and we had that last season at the end, it cost Liverpool the league. They conceded 50 goals last season. It hasn’t been rectified with the money that’s been spent and I’m very worried now as a Liverpool fan.
“There’s no men in the team. There’s not enough organising. You can’t always play well, it doesn’t happen like that, but sometimes you’ve got to grind results out. A game like that is a perfect illustration of that.
“Very rarely, if ever over the past few years, do Liverpool play poorly and win.”
Another popular reason given for Liverpool’s poor form relates to the high number of new signings that have been made.
Rodgers invested over £120m on nine new players in the summer and continues to maintain that it will take time for them to settle, adapt and produce the goods.
Carragher however feels the point has been overplayed, saying: “We keep saying ‘new players need time to adjust’ but I’m not a big believer in that. I’ve never moved clubs and I’m sure a foreign player coming in takes a bit of time, but we’re getting to the stage where we need to see performances.
“You’re already looking at the players and thinking ‘Liverpool need four or five players’.
“Last season when they came here we said ‘mentally and physically weak’. Same again, nothing’s changed. £120m spent and Luis Suarez has gone – so what? – they’re still mentally weak with no leadership.”
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