Liverpool: The Case Of The New Defence – Is It Good Enough? – The Anfield Wrap
If Liverpool have had an Achilles heel over the past few seasons it has been in defence. Under Rodgers — at least for some — the concession of 50 goals blew any chance of the league title. Two years later, under a different manager and with different defenders, the ball hit the back of Liverpool’s net another 50 times.On the face of it, Klopp has also moved to shore up the defence. The signings of Loris Karius and Joel Matip are the embodiment of this. The goalkeeper and centre-half come with ringing Bundesliga endorsements.
A summer-long apparent pursuit of a left-back, if you accept that Liverpool’s stance on the untried and newly-contracted Ben Chilwell is merely a negotiating one, may yet bring one final addition to the class of 2016-17.The sight of an unclaimed cross — from a corner — headed in from six yards at the Rose Bowl the other night was a reminder of undermining defensive fragility. That Gary Cahill out-jumped and out-muscled two midfield players (Firmino and Marko Grujic) suggests more time on the training field isn’t a guarantee of defensive improvement.So much doubt surrounds each member of the Reds’ rearguard.
The Premier League is a notoriously physical environment for keepers proven in European Leagues, notwithstanding Karius’s teenage sojourn in Manchester. Matip, too, has adjustments to make in new surroundings.