By Kevin Phillips

8th Feb, 2021 | 8:59am

Phillips: The Liverpool 'damage has been done' amid transfer verdict

Kevin Phillips insisted Liverpool signed Ozan Kabak and Ben Davies too late after the 4-1 loss to Manchester City.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the former Sunderland and England striker claimed “the damage has already been done” to the Reds’ title defence over the past month.

Liverpool slipped to their third successive home defeat on Sunday as Manchester City opened up a five-point lead at the top of the Premier League table.

Jurgen Klopp’s side have kept just one clean sheet in their last nine fixtures across all competitions and with Jordan Henderson and Fabinho dropping into the back four their creativity has also diminished.

Ozan Kabak and Ben Davies are both still waiting to make their debuts for the club, having arrived on deadline day from Schalke and Preston North End respectively.

When asked if the signings were a case of too little, too late, Phillips told Football Insider: “A lot of damage has already been done.

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“Liverpool are nowhere near the side they were last year. Defensively they are conceding a lot of goals and sloppy goals at that.

“They will keep going but most of the damage has been done already.

“Klopp needs to integrate those centre-halves as quickly as possible. They will certainly get game time from now until the end of the season.”

When asked if top-four is now Liverpool’s objective, Klopp told Sky Sports: “That is of course our main target, that is clear.

“We will try everything. There is enough games to play to secure that – but we have to win games and tonight we didn’t.”

In other news, Liverpool are set for crunch talks over Naby Keita as his new price tag is revealed.