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Leicester 3 Liverpool 1 Jurgen Klopp delivers some home truth as Liverpool's slide descends into a crisis

Crestfallen Liverpool manager struggles to sum up his side's latest disaster


Jurgen Klopp reacts after Leicester City's Harvey Barnes scores their third goal Pool via REUTERS/Michael Regan

Jurgen Klopp reacts after Leicester City's Harvey Barnes scores their third goal Pool via REUTERS/Michael Regan

Jurgen Klopp reacts after Leicester City's Harvey Barnes scores their third goal Pool via REUTERS/Michael Regan

ALL of a sudden, Jurgen Klopp appears to have no hope in his heart.

On a day when Leicester exposed the huge holes now emerging in Liverpool's make-up, the manager rightly hailed as the mastermind of their revival looked a lost soul on the touchline at the King Power Stadium.

Alisson Becker may have been the fall guy for a second week in succession as after his nightmare display handed Manchester City a win at Anfield last weekend, his mistake was crucial in this latest Liverpool calamity.

Yet it was the magnitude of their late collapse that left the impression this once great Liverpool team has now been fatally knocked off their perch.

Mo Salah had given Liverpool a deserved second-half lead with a classy goal after 67 minutes that looked set to pave the way for a much-needed win against a rival in the race for a top four finish in the Premier League.

Yet an equaliser from James Maddison, that was allowed to stand after a VAR review, preceded a disastrous mix-up between Alisson and debutant Ozan Kabak that handed Jamie Vardy a crucial third goal of this game.

Harvey Barnes struck a late clinching goal to compound the visitors' misery and Leicester could have had more as Liverpool's world imploded once again in the final chapter of this game.

It left Klopp to try and sum up what had gone wrong and like most of us looking on with bemused confusion, he struggled to find the words to sum up a third straight Premier League defeat and a fifth in their last eight matches.

"It was a clear game that we should win," he declared, his voice somewhat fainter than we are used to as he ponders a fall from grace that must have hurt him more than most.

"We played good football, dominated possession, took the game out of Leicester but apart from that we were really top in the game.


Liverpool goalkeeper Alisson (right) stands dejected after an error (Michael Regan/PA)

Liverpool goalkeeper Alisson (right) stands dejected after an error (Michael Regan/PA)

Liverpool goalkeeper Alisson (right) stands dejected after an error (Michael Regan/PA)

"We scored a goal, could have and should have scored more, whatever. Everything fine and then a penalty, free-kick, offside, not offside, goal. That had a proper impact. That is something that has to change. The first goal for me is offside. The difference is we think it's an objective thing but it's not.

"Their second goal is a misunderstanding obviously. It is a situation where we should shout and I didn't hear anyone shout. It is not that cool.

"The third goal I really don't like. We are so open. I cannot accept. That was it. The performance for 75 minutes or so was outstanding then we lost 3-1. That shows what a tricky situation we are in."

Klopp went on to concede his side will not close the gap on title favourites Manchester City, after admitting mistakes have ended Liverpool's title defence.

"I don’t think we can close that gap this year, to be honest," he added. "We have to win football games and big parts of our football was today again really, really good. We have to do it consistently.

"We have to avoid mistakes, we have to avoid misunderstandings. We cannot avoid mistakes of VAR or stuff like this, but all the rest that is in our hands we have to avoid.

"Today, in two situations we didn’t do that and that’s why they could score two goals. The rest of the football game is really good. Yes, if you win football games maybe you could score today more goals, but that’s the steps you have to make. First, you have to perform again; the result is always massively related to the performance.

"And we were good enough to win the game for a long, long period in the game, but not until the end because of a couple of things."

Klopp's downbeat tone as he tried to explain his side's latest collapse summed up his mood, with his personal grief following the death of his beloved mother Elisabeth now compounded by the worst run of form he has overseen as Liverpool boss.

The irony that it was his predecessor in the Anfield hot-seat and the man he rents his home from that masterminded Liverpool's latest beating was not lost on anyone, with Brendan Rodgers saluting his side's fighting qualities.

"It was a very good win, the players deserved it," declared Rodgers, who secured his first win over Liverpool since he lost his job at the club back in 2015.

"We didn't sink when we went a goal behind, we stayed calm and the players were brilliant in that period, a real collective team performance.

"You can see the improvement in the team's mindset. Our reaction was superb.

"I'm proud of the players. Maybe a year ago, we would have fallen behind and not got anything out of it, but we are in a different place now."

The win eased Leicester six points clear of Liverpool in the race to secure a top four finish, with Liverpool in danger of being in a mid-table position if the teams around them win their games in hand.

It is an unthinkable position for the fallen Premier League champions, with Klopp faced with the task of picking up the pieces ahead of Tuesday's Champions League game against RB Leipzig in Budapest.

Yet the sight of Liverpool down in 15th place in the Premier League form guide after this game confirmed this slide in form is now much more than a temporary dip in form.

If the title was surrendered against Manchester City last weekend, this latest defeat puts their hopes of a top four finish on the line.

The light has been switched off at Liverpool and Klopp needs to find a new bulb very quickly.

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Online Editors