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Complacency hits Liverpool: Five talking points from crushing Red Star Belgrade loss

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Liverpool came unstuck against Red Star Belgrade in the Champions League as they lost 2-0 on Tuesday. The defeat threw a spanner in the works as we face Paris Saint-Germain and Napoli in our final group games.

A couple of goals from Milan Pavkov were enough to defeat the Reds and hand them their third away loss on the spin in the competition.

More surprisingly, we barely threatened the home side after a decent spell of around 10 minutes. A number of players didn’t seem dialled into the game and we were made to pay.

Looking back at the fixture, there weren’t many positives to bring out and here are the five talking points from the clash.

1) Liverpool taking the game lightly

The Reds didn’t travel to Serbia with Xherdan Shaqiri as Jurgen Klopp didn’t want to make a political statement against Red Star.

However, the players didn’t seem to turn up for the first half at all. The home side were chomping at the bits, and it wasn’t a great surprise when they took the lead.

Xherdan Shaqiri of Liverpool

Normally, the Reds would have responded and laid siege to the opposition box, but we did nothing of that sort and were made to pay by conceding another goal.

This should serve as a warning to the Reds for the remainder of the campaign. There are no freebies in the Champions League or in the Premier League, and we have to give our 100% all the time.

2) Adam Lallana and Daniel Sturridge fail to impress

It was always going to be a bit of a risk playing with Adam Lallana and Daniel Sturridge. Both haven’t started many games for us this season, and playing at a tough ground was always going to be a big ask for the pair.

The Englishmen struggled to impose themselves on the pitch with Sturridge missing a glorious chance of making it 1-0 to the Reds early on.

Daniel Sturridge Joe Gomez Liverpool training

The smarter thing would have been to start with our best XI and then sub those players in who need minutes on the pitch.

3) Our attack has no bite

Our attack featured Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane but the pair were absolutely woeful throughout the game.

Sadio Mane liverpool

Mane was even pushed wide right in the second half but the Senegalese gave the ball away regularly while Salah was a bit part player in the game.

The Egyptian did strike the post in the second half but both players need to get back to their best if we want to make it to the knockout stages of the Champions League.

4) The missing midfield

If our attack was toothless, our midfield was non-existent. Georginio Wijnaldum, James Milner and Lallana weren’t up for the fight against the Serbian side, and the trio had no say in the game at all.

It was a big surprise seeing Wijnaldum and Milner struggle in the heart of the pitch given how good they have been this season, and they need to prepare themselves for a couple of tough games against PSG and Napoli in the coming weeks.

5) Champions League future in our own hands

Although the loss was damaging, Liverpool have their Champions League future in their own hands. A win over Paris Saint-Germain will be enough to see us through to the next round.

Anything less than a win, and we have to defeat Napoli by two clear goals to make it into the knockout phase.

Read more: “The team should apologize and reimburse any fan that went to watch” – Some Liverpool fans upset over 2-0 loss to Red Star Belgrade

Liverpool can’t seem to do things the easy way as we faced a similar scenario last season. Of course, we were up against lesser opposition last time around, however, we should perform well when we have our backs against the wall.

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Former Red believes Jose Mourinho could get sacked if Man United lose to Liverpool

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Jamie Redknapp Liverpool

Former Liverpool star Jamie Redknapp believes that a loss for Manchester United against Liverpool will inevitably lead to Jose Mourinho’s sacking.

The two giants of Premier League football meet on Sunday, and the Reds are 16 points ahead of United after just 16 games this season.

Liverpool are the only unbeaten side in the Premier League and are giving Manchester City a run for their money in the race for the title.

The Reds know a win will keep them on top of the table while a loss for United could scupper their chances of a top-four finish.

Redknapp was speaking to Sky Sports (h/t Metro) and claims such games are huge for the supporters:

“These sorts of games are season-definers. They are the ones that fans wait for. If United win, it will be, ‘Wow, okay, we’ve got to give this guy more time. He can turn it around’.

“But if they lose it will become a situation where you have a snowball effect. The inquest will be so big afterwards and it might feel that it’s all becoming inevitable for Jose.”

Jurgen Klopp (left) and Jose Mourinho (right)

Jurgen Klopp (left) and Jose Mourinho (right)

The former Red claimed that losing to Manchester City would be acceptable as they are one of the best sides in the world but a loss to the Reds would be too much.

Read more: Jurgen Klopp claims Liverpool will not make any winter signings this season

United do have a decent record against us in the Premier League with Jurgen Klopp in charge. Hopefully, we get the win on Sunday and keep our title dreams alive.

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“Do I have to win it?” – Jurgen Klopp responds to Jose Mourinho’s latest trophy jibe

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Jurgen Klopp (left) and Jose Mourinho (right)

Jurgen Klopp (left) and Jose Mourinho (right)

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp responded the latest Jose Mourinho jibe where the Manchester United manager claimed that trophies are important.

The United manager was speaking ahead of our clash against the Red Devils, and Klopp was not going to have any of it.

The German claimed that anything less than a trophy would not be considered as a failure after our great start to the season (h/t Liverpool Echo).

“Do I have to? Do I have to win it?”

“People might remember that but what I have to do is make the best of the things the club is offering me – that is what I believe in.”

The manager also spoke about the Champions League ride last season, claiming it was brilliant, even if we didn’t win the title.

Klopp also claimed that life wouldn’t be great if it was only about doing the best all the time.

“I enjoyed it a lot. Going to the final was fantastic but in life – in all departments of life including your job – if only the best counts and effort doesn’t count then life is s***.

“You can do whatever you want but if I’m not as smart as Einstein or whatever, I can’t try a little bit? I will never be him.

“I love the challenge. Make the best of it. That is how I understand life, I learned it a little bit in football. In the end other people have to judge that.”

The manager is yet to win a trophy during his time at Liverpool, but came close by making it to three finals. Liverpool have made their best start ever in the club’s history, and lead the Premier League after 16 games.

Read more: Jurgen Klopp claims Liverpool will not make any winter signings this season

Klopp could certainly make this season even better with a win over United on Sunday, a feat the German has never achieved in the Premier League.

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Liverpool star claims this action against Napoli was similar to scoring a goal

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Alisson

Alisson produced the moment of our Champions League campaign when he saved in the dying seconds from Arkadiusz Milik.

The save ensured Liverpool defeated Napoli in our final group game 1-0, and we can now think about the knockout rounds.

The Brazilian has been exceptional for us since signing from AS Roma, and the keeper spoke to the Times (h/t ESPN) claiming that the save almost felt like scoring a game-winning goal.

“A save at the end of the game is always great and you feel you have contributed to the game.

“Of course, an important save in the first minute is as important as a save in the last minute but for the fans it’s the closest thing to scoring a goal in the last minute, like we did in the derby against Everton.”

Alisson Liverpool

The former Roma keeper also thanked the teammates for helping secure the win.

“But I only managed to make that save with the help of my teammates’ contribution and thank God we got the victory.”

The next test for the Brazilian would be the clash against Manchester United. A win will keep us at the top of the table, and we need to put United to the sword on Sunday.

Read more: Jurgen Klopp provides crucial injury update ahead of clash against Manchester United

Alisson was excellent in our draw against Chelsea in the Premier League and has only grown in stature. Hopefully, the Brazilian puts up a fantastic performance against our arch rivals.

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