It is hard for Liverpool fans to understand what is happening, even harder to digest it. The fall of the “reds” continues and with each week the decline becomes more noticeable. The 3-0 loss to the Wolves marked another bottoming out in a season that had had enough of them already.
Jurgen Klopp’s team, no longer in contention for both national cups, may forget that they will be in the top four in the Premier League in May. This is their seventh Premier League defeat of the season, leaving them in 10th place and much closer to the bottom of the table than the top. Now they have to worry about Aston Villa and Crystal Palace, not Newcastle or Manchester United.
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It was another erratic away game, with Joel Matip scoring an own goal and debutant Craig Dawson taking advantage of more terrible defensive play to double Wolves’ lead within the first 12 minutes.
Liverpool did try to get back in the game in the second half, but they Darwin Nunesu, Naby Keita and Mohamed Salah squandered great scoring chances before the visitors were penalized on the counter with a run by Adama Traore and a flawless finish by Ruben Neves.
The game ended with Wolves fans cheering for their team’s every pass, and Julen Lopetegui’s team just playing their downed opponents. For Klopp and his supporters, this was the final insult.
Goal.com traditionally names the winners and losers of the match at Molineux.
For all Liverpool’s problems, it should not be forgotten that Wolverhampton are a team that continues the season under the guidance of their new coach.
They may have started the match in the Premier League relegation zone thanks to Everton’s victory over Arsenal earlier in the day, but Lopetegui made them look up instead of down, a clear improvement since joining the bridge In November.
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It must be said that he has good players: Matheus Nunes and Ruben Neves were joined in a formidable midfield trio by newcomer Mario Lemina, while Ryan Ait-Nuri, as before, impressed Mohamed Salah.
The Wolves deserved to take the lead, and they deserved to keep the lead and then build it up. They were lucky from time to time, but they were the ones who looked like a united team that believes in success, and this is the merit of their coach.
If only the older members of this Liverpool team could follow the example of the youngest player. It’s a dark time for the Reds, but they’ve found a real gem in Baicetic, a player who looks to be good enough to settle in the center of their midfield for years to come.
At 18, the Spanish Under-21 player set an example for his teammates, and with his composure, tenacity and attitude, many of his older colleagues did not look very presentable.
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They look like the whole world is on their shoulders, and Baycetich looks like the world is at his feet. He is so calm in possession of the ball, has such a good sense of danger and is very strong in martial arts for such a young player.
Liverpool could use a few more like him right now. Players like Thiago Alcantara, Jordan Henderson and an absent Fabinho let him and their coach down.
Well, if you weren’t there, you won’t be blamed for it, right?
That’s who set the tone for the whole match. At the beginning of the meeting, Naby Keita rolled the ball to Matip, and the rest of the Liverpool players rushed en masse to the half of the Wolverhampton field.
Matip is expected to throw diagonally deep into enemy territory, allowing his teammates to compete for the first and second ball. Instead, the Reds centre-back made a terrible mistake by passing directly to a Wolverhampton player.
In an instant, Liverpool fell behind and by the time they recovered they were 0-2 down. Matip scored the first of these goals by inexplicably failing to react to a ball played in the penalty area and then deflecting a shot from Hwang Hee-Chan right under the far post.
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Shortly thereafter, Dawson scored a second goal and if Matheus Nunes had been as ruthless in his finish, Matip would have cost Liverpool another goal when he delayed a long shot behind the Reds.
To be honest, he made some impressive raids ahead, but when you play as a defender, your job is to defend. Matip and his partner Joe Gomez didn’t do well enough. Everyone is looking forward to the return of Virgil van Dijk.
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Well-chosen to play center with rookie Cody Gakpo on the left, Nunes knew he was up against a strong defensive pairing of Dawson and Max Kilman.
He lost the battle. Too often he failed to keep the ball and let his team get close to someone else’s box, and when he did have the ball, his decisions were, to put it mildly, questionable.
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He was supposed to pass to Salah at 0-2, but went to the net himself, shooting too close to José Sa, and shortly after that, an overly strong left-footed cross drew a line under his first 45 minutes.
He also had a big moment after the break, when Alexander-Arnold supported him from the depths. He should have scored if Liverpool were going to save this match. This did not happen. Sa saved and Neves punished the Reds at the other end of the pitch soon after, adding to Nunez’s suffering.
If he can find a way to sort out this mess, then Klopp really should be considered the best coach in the world. The Liverpool manager at times looked shell-shocked, unable to comprehend what was happening before his eyes.
He knows it was bad, but it couldn’t get any worse, right? There must have been an improvement, right? Yes, it could be worse, and no, there was no improvement.
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For half an hour, Liverpool were as bad as the whole season, including a loss to Brighton that Klopp described as the worst of his managerial career.
And while they inevitably improve their game, the very fact that they can fall to such a bottom and do it so regularly is frankly absurd.
This is a team that was on the verge of becoming legendary last May, but at this point they are the wreckage of a team – perhaps beyond repair.
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“In the morning you will be fired,” the home fans sang to Klopp after the Wolves’ third goal. He will not be fired, but he needs things to start to change as soon as possible.
Remember, Liverpool’s next game is the Merseyside derby. And after such a Liverpool match, Sean Dyche and his guys will lick their lips rapaciously.
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