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Merson: Liverpool could drop to fourth this season without reinforcements 

Paul Merson is the latest Football figure casting doubt on whether Liverpool can retain their league title this season.

The Reds won their first game of the new season against Leeds, but were made to fight every step of the way against the newly promoted side.

That performance carrying over from their lacklusture form to end the last campaign has sparked discussion whether they have the squad depth required to go again.

So far Liverpool has only added Greek left back Kostas Tsimikas in the transfer window to date, but Speaking on Sky Sports (via Metro), Merson says more is required 

“Liverpool could easily drop to fourth.

‘You look at the goals Liverpool let in against Leeds: wow. I just think they turned up and thought they would wipe the floor with Leeds. ‘

“I think they need to buy someone. 

“It would not surprise me if the finished fourth this season, and I thought that before this game.

 

‘It’s the same team, and they have a massive amount of players who have to play every week 

 

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“Virgil van Dijk cannot get injured. The full-backs cannot get injured. They have not got anyone to replace the front three if they are injured.

Merson says in contrast, the Reds chief title rival will be able to cover losses.

“If Man City get injuries, they will just play.

“We’ll score more goals than you” anyway. 

“What we’ll see later in the season is teams like Man City come into the fold massively, because their squad is too big. 

“That’s why I worry about Liverpool, there’s five or six players who must play week in, week out, otherwise the team is weakened immensely.’

Merson’s comments follow on the back on former Reds striker Peter Crouch saying that he noticed a bit complacency of late.

Crouch is certainly not as pessimistic as Merson when it comes to the fortunes of Liverpool this season, but says some new faces would help their prospects.

“Liverpool are still my idea of champions and their squad is fantastic but there are always areas that need some investment.

“I looked at the defence against Leeds. They have got three great players in Virgil van Dijk, Joe Gomez and Joel Matip but I believe they could do with another addition there, as I wouldn't want to see Fabinho used as the fourth-choice central defender.

“Look at the second goal they conceded, to Patrick Bamford. It was a rare mistake by Van Dijk that had a hint of complacency about it. Does he make the same mistake if Liverpool have signed a central defender this summer and pressure is being applied to his place? 

“Competition raises your standards by an extra one or two per cent."

Crouch also believes that the front line may need some tinkering and says his old club missed a trick in not signing the highly rated German talent in Timo Werner.

“There are only so many times Mohamed Salah, who bailed out his team, and Sadio Mane can produce heroics. 

“Adding another midfielder — such as Bayern Munich's Thiago Alcantara — or back-up striker would be welcomed. I have a feeling they missed a trick not getting Timo Werner."

There are some valid points and something that many fans have raised during the off-season.

At the end of the day, if Jurgen is content with what he has at his disposal and he sees these players on a daily basis, then who are we to argue?

 

Edited by TLW


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Its amazing that people,seem to forgwt just how good this team is and has been the,past 2 seasons. 

 

Suddenly over a few weeks the team has gone from champions by a long distance to potentially be struggling for top 4? 

 

Its boss just how much people in the media want us to fail. 

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We could finish 4th with new recruits. Nothing is guaranteed. 

 

My worry is the complacency at the back. We know this group of players can defend and keep a tight unit but I heard we have conceeded 26 in 15,  context being foot off the gas as the league was won but we need that focus back.

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23 minutes ago, Leyton388 said:

Its boss just how much people in the media want us to fail. 

Nah, they’re just scratting around for something to say. 

90% of pre-season predictions are no more profound than either “They could really push on,” “They’re going to get worse,” or “About the same again.”
 

Pushing On is the same as About The Same Again - we’ve been the best side in the world for a couple of years. If you’re a bit thick and shit like Merson then research isn’t really on your list of options, so “They should probably sign an unnamed player for an unspecified position,” is about as good as it gets. 
 

Before the First World War, Willem II of Germany was described as ‘Approaching problems with an open mouth’. Merson does the same with his punditry. 

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6 hours ago, TLW said:

Paul Merson is the latest Football figure casting doubt on whether Liverpool can retain their league title this season.

The Reds won their first game of the new season against Leeds, but were made to fight every step of the way against the newly promoted side.

That performance carrying over from their lacklusture form to end the last campaign has sparked discussion whether they have the squad depth required to go again.

So far Liverpool has only added Greek left back Kostas Tsimikas in the transfer window to date, but Speaking on Sky Sports (via Metro), Merson says more is required 

“Liverpool could easily drop to fourth.

‘You look at the goals Liverpool let in against Leeds: wow. I just think they turned up and thought they would wipe the floor with Leeds. ‘

“I think they need to buy someone. 

“It would not surprise me if the finished fourth this season, and I thought that before this game.

 

‘It’s the same team, and they have a massive amount of players who have to play every week 

 

image.png

“Virgil van Dijk cannot get injured. The full-backs cannot get injured. They have not got anyone to replace the front three if they are injured.

Merson says in contrast, the Reds chief title rival will be able to cover losses.

“If Man City get injuries, they will just play.

“We’ll score more goals than you” anyway. 

“What we’ll see later in the season is teams like Man City come into the fold massively, because their squad is too big. 

“That’s why I worry about Liverpool, there’s five or six players who must play week in, week out, otherwise the team is weakened immensely.’

Merson’s comments follow on the back on former Reds striker Peter Crouch saying that he noticed a bit complacency of late.

Crouch is certainly not as pessimistic as Merson when it comes to the fortunes of Liverpool this season, but says some new faces would help their prospects.

“Liverpool are still my idea of champions and their squad is fantastic but there are always areas that need some investment.

“I looked at the defence against Leeds. They have got three great players in Virgil van Dijk, Joe Gomez and Joel Matip but I believe they could do with another addition there, as I wouldn't want to see Fabinho used as the fourth-choice central defender.

“Look at the second goal they conceded, to Patrick Bamford. It was a rare mistake by Van Dijk that had a hint of complacency about it. Does he make the same mistake if Liverpool have signed a central defender this summer and pressure is being applied to his place? 

“Competition raises your standards by an extra one or two per cent."

Crouch also believes that the front line may need some tinkering and says his old club missed a trick in not signing the highly rated German talent in Timo Werner.

“There are only so many times Mohamed Salah, who bailed out his team, and Sadio Mane can produce heroics. 

“Adding another midfielder — such as Bayern Munich's Thiago Alcantara — or back-up striker would be welcomed. I have a feeling they missed a trick not getting Timo Werner."

There are some valid points and something that many fans have raised during the off-season.

At the end of the day, if Jurgen is content with what he has at his disposal and he sees these players on a daily basis, then who are we to argue?

 

 

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1 hour ago, Leyton388 said:

Its amazing that people,seem to forgwt just how good this team is and has been the,past 2 seasons. 

 

Suddenly over a few weeks the team has gone from champions by a long distance to potentially be struggling for top 4?

We've been mediocre since February, our defence has become leaky, we've a relatively small squad of quality players, and we seem more inclined to sell than buy.

 

So there are some grounds for concern. As good as we've been over the last two or three years.

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2 hours ago, Leyton388 said:

Its amazing that people,seem to forgwt just how good this team is and has been the,past 2 seasons. 

 

Suddenly over a few weeks the team has gone from champions by a long distance to potentially be struggling for top 4? 

 

Its boss just how much people in the media want us to fail. 

I don't think it is that with Merson here.

 

Just a case of highlighting our lack of cover for key areas/small squad..albeit not done very intelligently as Merson is thick.

 

As we all know with have 3 senior centre halves and 1 of them is injured regularly.

 

We all know the forwards situation.

 

We have flogged the same very small group of players and they have performed miracles for 2 seasons back to back - doing it for a 3rd is incredibly difficult, even the cheats with all their resources found it too much last season after 2 incredible seasons.

 

This season is going to see games come thicker and faster than ever and it is a fair and reasonable worry to say that we look potentially light on depth.

 

Are we a very, very good side? Yes of course we are, but even the best sides need to be freshened up and quality and depth added to remain at the highest level, especially when the competition is strengthening and when games are going to be coming thicker and faster than ever.

 

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So City  have a huge squad of top players and can cope with players missing.

What was last seasons excuse again? Oh that’s right, Laporte being out.

Surely an able deputy could have stepped forward from the vast array of multi-million pound defenders Super Pep bought? Almost as if the money was wasted isn’t it.

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Merson is a tit and states the obvious.  Most of us on here I reckon have misgivings about whether the existing squad can finish top of the heap again without some good additions .

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18 minutes ago, an tha said:

I don't think it is that with Merson here.

 

Just a case of highlighting our lack of cover for key areas/small squad..albeit not done very intelligently as Merson is thick.

 

As we all know with have 3 senior centre halves and 1 of them is injured regularly.

 

We all know the forwards situation.

 

We have flogged the same very small group of players and they have performed miracles for 2 seasons back to back - doing it for a 3rd is incredibly difficult, even the cheats with all their resources found it too much last season after 2 incredible seasons.

 

This season is going to see games come thicker and faster than ever and it is a fair and reasonable worry to say that we look potentially light on depth.

 

Are we a very, very good side? Yes of course we are, but even the best sides need to be freshened up and quality and depth added to remain at the highest level, especially when the competition is strengthening and when games are going to be coming thicker and faster than ever.

 

i know we need freshening up, but seriously do you think we could finish 4th? i just can't see that myself. i could see a world we fall behind city certainly. and there's a chance chelsea will click and we carry on the sloppy way we've been. but no fucking way will we finish behind that goblin cunt in salford. 

 

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We'll win the league by 10 points. The team will be stronger this season than ever before. People still seem not to have clocked that this City side are hugely on the wane. Last season was not a freak.

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2 minutes ago, Barrington Womble said:

i know we need freshening up, but seriously do you think we could finish 4th? i just can't see that myself. i could see a world we fall behind city certainly. and there's a chance chelsea will click and we carry on the sloppy way we've been. but no fucking way will we finish behind that goblin cunt in salford. 

 

I'd be surprised to see us finish 4th but let's face it 2nd, 3rd or 4th is the same really....only 1st matters.

 

Worries me massively only having the 3 senior centre halves given Matip's injury record - i know some point to Fabinho playing there, but him doing so weakens our midfield options and i am never a fan of shoehorning in players to play out of position.

 

It feels a bit risky and unnecessarily so IMO.

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1 minute ago, an tha said:

I'd be surprised to see us finish 4th but let's face it 2nd, 3rd or 4th is the same really....only 1st matters.

 

Worries me massively only having the 3 senior centre halves given Matip's injury record - i know some point to Fabinho playing there, but him doing so weakens our midfield options and i am never a fan of shoehorning in players to play out of position.

 

It feels a bit risky and unnecessarily so IMO.

Lovren was not the answer neither was not replacing him .

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Pundits are a joke now, it's largely due to the proliferation of click-bait 'journalism'. It's designed to get shared on social media and create arguments rather than debate. The idea we'd drop to fourth is laughable, I could see us dropping to second and city winning the prem but that's about it, our first eleven is still world's apart from man u, chelsea and arsenal. Best fullbacks in the world, best goalie in the world, best central defender in the world, three of the world's top 10 attackers. 

 

All we need now is Garth Crooks to start comparing Harry Maguire to Franz Beckenbauer and then we'll have ourselves a party. 

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