BBC pundit identifies Liverpool's weakness, criticises first-team duo
By Aramide Oladipo
BBC pundit Danny Murphy believes that Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp should consider placing two midfielders in front of the back-four to improve on the team’s weak defence.
The Merseyside club slumped to another disappointing result after being held to a 1-1 draw against newly-promoted Newcastle United at St James’ Park on Sunday afternoon.
The visitors opened the scoring with a sublime effort from playmaker Philippe Coutinho but the Magpies quickly responded with a goal from summer signing Joselu before the interval.
The result means that the Reds have only picked up one victory in the last seven matches in all competitions.
Expressing his thoughts on Liverpool’s display on the weekend on the BBC Sport website, Murphy was quick to single out the team’s first-team central defensive pairing for their role in Newcastle’s goal.
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“Most goals are preventable, but Newcastle’s equaliser on Sunday was an especially poor one to concede,” he said.
“I don’t know what Joel Matip and Dejan Lovren were doing but Jonjo Shelvey was able to play his pass through a gaping corridor in the middle of the Liverpool centre-halves for Joselu to run on to and score.
“Liverpool have been poor defensively all season and, although I think they have been working on their set-plays recently, they still look fragile.
“The easy way to solve that and get back on track would be by having two midfielders sit in front of their back four and maybe get a couple of clean sheets, without worrying about making chances or scoring.”
Both Lovren and Matip have started for the Reds in the heart of the defence for the last three matches but they have failed to achieve a single clean sheet in the process.
In fact, Liverpool have the joint worst defensive record amongst the teams currently sitting in the top half of the Premier League table.
After the international break, the Reds welcome bitter rivals Manchester United to Anfield in the league.