When Jurgen Klopp arrived at Anfield, many thought it was one of the steals of the century for Liverpool to get one of Europe’s most coveted managers.
However, since October, when Brendan Rodgers was sacked, the task at hand for Klopp hasn’t been easy, with the team from the red side of Merseyside sitting 9th in the table.
At a club where fans demand the impossible – like a return to the glory days of the 70’s and 80’s – it can’t be easy to be the man tasked with delivering in the dugout.
Yet fans already see Klopp as a legend, and given he has led the team to runners up in the Capital One Cup already, is he close to taking the Reds to the next level?
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If he is to do so, then changes need to be made, with a win rate of 46.15% very poor for a team of Liverpool’s stature. It is of course still early days for Klopp, and this summer he can start assembling his side and making it his own.
His first action will surely be to sort out the inconsistent goalkeepers that is Simon Mignolet and Adam Bogdan. Since selling Pepe Reina, Liverpool have lacked that leader at the back, and Mignolet has often been at fault for Liverpool’s poor performances this term.
That’s not to say he hasn’t had constant bad performances, but he needs a better keeper above him to motivate him to make him better. Bogdan does not provide any kind of threat to the number one jersey, and with rumours of Marc-Andre ter Stegen arriving at Anfield in the summer, it could be the signing Liverpool need.
Their defence has also let the side down, with too many inconsistent performances. Although they have potential on the flanks with players such as Nathaniel Clyne, Jon Flanagan and Alberto Moreno, it’s the men in the middle who are the problem. The likes of Kolo Toure, Martin Skrtel and Mamadou Sakho do not fill fans with confidence when they start.
Skrtel should have been sold years ago, and is looking to be moved on in the summer. The signing of Dejan Lovren looked to be a steal, but alongside these defenders he has struggled. If he is given more time alongside a better defensive partner, he and Liverpool can move forward and improve. But until changes are made, they will struggle.
When Lazar Markovic was loaned out to Fenerbahce, many fans questioned why, especially considering the sale of Raheem Sterling to Manchester City. Liverpool now have no wingers who can cut in from the flanks, with attacking midfielders Adam Lallana, Philippe Coutinho and Roberto Firmino all regularly played out of position instead.
With players such as Jordan Ibe and Sheyi Ojo still growing, the side needs a new dynamic winger.
And then the strike force. Daniel Sturridge is great when fit, but Christian Benteke does not seem wanted or needed at Liverpool. Divock Origi and Danny Ings are obviously going to be better in the future, but until then they should be loaned out to gain first team experience.
As for Mario Balotelli, the less said the better…