LONDON: Liverpool desperately need a win in the Champions League to save their season but Jurgen Klopp’s side look less confident and show physical and mental fatigue as RB Leipzig will be the perfect opponent for them in the last 16.
Prohibited from entering Germany due to COVID-19 restrictions, the England champion will travel to Budapest for the first match early Wednesday morning after three wins in the last 12 matches of all tournaments.
The record ended their efforts to earn a league title or win the FA Cup making the Champions League the only platform to create greatness for Liverpool this season.
However, there is still a lack of confidence that the squad will change after being injured throughout the season and desperately need improvement.
The loss of three central defenders – Virgil van Dijk, Joe Gomez and Joel Matip – who continued to end the season had a huge impact on Liverpool forcing midfielders Fabinho and Jordan Henderson to fill the vacancy.
Without them, Liverpool lost control in the middle as before Van Dijk and Gomez often played more forward.
To make matters worse, goalkeeper Alisson Becker, who has played a key role in the club’s success over the past two seasons, made many mistakes when conceding seven goals against Manchester City and Leicester in the last two games.
Injuries also mean the starting line-up of Alisson, Trent Alexander-Arnold, Andy Robertson, Henderson, Fabinho, Georginio Wijnaldum, Sadio Mane, Roberto Firmino and Mohamed Salah will have to carry a very heavy load this season.
After four years of implementing energy-saving methods in the style of offensive football, Liverpool’s energy reserves seem to be drying up.
“When you look at the percentage of minutes of Premier League matches being held since August 2018, this is a team that has played well for three years and produced great moments, trophies for the club,” said former Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher.
“This is not about behavior. This is not a team that thinks, ‘We’ve won the league, we’ve done it’. They haven’t stopped in the last three years.”