Former Liverpool star turned pundit Jason McAteer has explained his thoughts on our difficult start to the season.
We’re out the League Cup and sit ninth in the Premier League, having conceded 16 goals in nine matches. Only Watford, Palace, Stoke, West Ham and Everton have let in more…
When we qualified for the Champions League at the end of last season, many thought we’d make serious moves in the transfer market to consolidate our position, but despite rumours of a transfer war chest and the biggest spend in the history of the club – we only signed one starter: Mo Salah.
As McAteer suggested, our failure to strengthen our rubbish defence was not the fault of our owners but a mistaken gamble by management.
“When we didn’t get Van Dijk or a new keeper I always felt it would be a feast or famine season in terms of results – we’d either win 4-0 or get beaten 4-1,” McAteer told BeIN Sports, cited in the Echo.
“I felt it would be like that because of the recruitment in the summer.
“There’s no lack of ambition from the owners. They have given the manager virtually an open cheque book. He had over £150million to spend.
“If Van Dijk had come for £70million and (Naby) Keita for £60million, having bought (Mo) Salah, you’re looking at over £160million there they were willing to outlay.
“Klopp dipped into that money to buy (Alex) Oxlade-Chamberlain and I’m not too sure why he brought him in. Offensively, we didn’t need strengthening. I thought that was a bit of a strange buy. Maybe he sees it as one for the future.
“The owners haven’t lacked ambition with the money they have given him, recruitment comes down to the manager. Unfortunately, he didn’t get the players he wanted in the market.
“The problem for me is didn’t have a Plan B. If you can’t get Van Dijk and you know you need a centre half then surely there must be someone else. He didn’t go and buy someone else and now we’re seeing the downside of not doing that.”
We agree with McAteer, but are still fully behind Klopp. He’s an elite level coach and has earned the chance to right his wrongs.
Even his current squad is still jam packed full of potential and could be fixed with one or two additions and the return to fitness of Sadio Mane and Adam Lallana.
If we can bring Naby Keita in early this January, finally take the plunge and replace Simon Mignolet and buy the central defender we so desperately need – we don’t see too many weak areas.