26 Oct 2015

Rodgers MK2? Klopp uses lame Rodgers-esque excuse to explain 'disappointing' Liverpool result

It's only three games into the new season, and new Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp is already starting to wheel out the same tired excuses so often used by Brendan Rodgers during his ill-fated reign at Anfield.

After the 'disappointing' 1-1 draw with Southampton on Sunday, Klopp admitted that lack of belief is 'a problem' and moaned about the number of games Liverpool have to play. He told reporters:

“I saw two teams fighting for a result, one team with more freshness because of one game less in the week. There was quality on the other side – and they didn’t play on Thursday".

Klopp used this barely credible excuse twice in his post-match press conference, and it's as tiresome now as it was under Brendan Rodgers.

With the greatest respect, fans don't want to hear about how difficult it is to play two games in a week. This is English football - it's par for the course, and if Klopp can't handle it then he should've stayed on his sabattical.

Even with injuries, Liverpool have more than enough players to cover the games, plus dozens of players in the academy just begging for an opportunity to prove themselves. For example:

* Benteke and Firmino have both been out injured, so they're obviously fresh. Klopp could've started them both against Southampton, which would've immediately freshened up the side.

* Teixeira is desperate (and ready) for a chance in the first team, so he could've played in place of Lallana.

* Lucas only played for 45 minutes on Thursday, so the 'freshness' excuse shouldn't even apply to him.

* Conor Randall has made the bench for every game under Klopp, so he could've started in place of Clyne, or come on in the second half to give the England man a rest.

* Jerome Sinclair is fit and available. He could've started ahead of Origi. If not, why not? It's doubtful that he'd do any worse, and these youngsters will only improve if they've given the experience they need.

* Cameron Brannagan is also another option. According to LFC's website, Brannagan is a 'creative and inventive midfielder' who 'likes to take up a position just behind the frontman but can also operate on either wing'.

Clearly, Klopp has options, and the best time to experiment is now, when - due to the transition phase - fans are going to be more forgiving of bad results.

Klopp also utilised more of Brendan Rodgers' rhetoric, when he delivered this distinctly Rodgers-esque gem:

“I saw two teams fighting for a result...but we played football against them...and we were brave enough to play football".

Urgh. This reminds me of Rodgers and his cloying comments about players having the 'courage' to play football. Trying to 'play football' is the absolute bare minimum that should be expected, and describing this obligation as 'brave' is (IMO) timid and mollycoddling management.

Liverpool need confident men who just get on the pitch and have the self-motivation to succeed; right now, the squad (with very few exceptions) is packed with timorous, metrosexually meek boys who don't have the strength or character to deliver under pressure. Pandering to that is a mistake, and that's exactly what Klopp is doing by describing the players as 'brave' for basically doing what should be demanded - and expected - of them.

People moan about Louis Van Gaal's tough approach, but it works. Quite apart from the fact he's won league titles in three different leagues, he made up a 20+ point deficit last season, and got United into the Champions League. This season, Van Gaal's team is currently two points off top spot, and that's in spite of playing (at times) turgid football.

If, as Klopp claims, the players 'feel the pressure', then tough luck. They're paid obscenely well to deal with it, and if Lallana and his misfiring cronies can't hack the privilege of being paid like kings to live the dream, then they can quit and let tougher, more mentally robust players take over.

Hopefully, in the coming months, Klopp will realise that being everyone's mate is not conducive to consistently getting result. Rodgers tried the softly-softly 'I'm your pal!' approach, and look where that got him.


NOTE: I am 100% behind Klopp, but just because he's new doesn't mean he's immune to critical analysis. That is what this site is about, and after almost 10 years online, people should expect that by now. Anyone who doesn't like this approach is free to go to some other site. Any post that moans about 'negativity' etc will be deleted. If you disagree with the points raised, make a football-related counter argument.

Author: Jaimie K


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