Liverpool’s well-documented woes in defence keep deepening, but could Klopp have done more to prevent this? Scott Groom (@ScottCGroom) takes a further look.
Jürgen Klopp has always been one to put his faith in players and in systems.
Whether that be with a certain style of playing, how he wants players to press or just in their ability.
A lot of the time, that faith has at least been somewhat repaid.
However, the current defensive injury crisis looks like a time where his faith in both players and systems has failed him.
Let’s rewind to the summer transfer window.
A good summer windowEmbed from Getty Images
The predicted departure of stalwart Dejan Lovren saw Liverpool down to three senior centre backs.
Lovren’s time at Anfield will be one many can’t make their mind up about.
However, he was certainly not the worst fourth choice centre back in world football.
But it’s okay, lots of us thought it would be okay and that we’d invest in some further cover.
Though the arrivals of Thiago, Tsimikas and Jota made the window a success, a centre back is what many thought was needed.
But it never came, and even then that was okay.
Van Dijk, Gomez and Matip are all very capable, and there’s Fabinho to fill in as an emergency.
All out of options before Christmas
Yet before Christmas, even our emergency centre back is out of action and Klopp is left struggling for answers.Embed from Getty Images
Answers I’m sure will come, in one form or another.
Young Rhys Williams has impressed in his appearances so far, but he’s is just that – young.
He’s 19 and untried, inexperienced and to be brutally honest a risk.
But what choice has Klopp left himself with?
His choice to not replace Lovren has come back to cause him one hell of a headache.
His second mistake and example of misplaced loyalty was trusting Matip’s fitness record.
While van Dijk’s injury could never have been predicted, Matip’s problems could have been.
Should he have trusted Matip?
His record has not been great in recent years and it took just one game back to see him sidelined again.Embed from Getty Images
And with the intensity of this season already showing, you can’t see him not getting injured time and again.
That adds another element to Klopp’s misjudging of the situation.
I don’t criticise the boss often, but I can’t help but feel he has got this one wrong.
To say he was going to be found out so quickly and so dramatically was fanciful at the start of the season.
But now it’s hapoened, you can’t help but feel his error has been punished. Drastically.
The next question is will he act on it in January?