Whats happened to our style of play?

Liverpool Football Club - General Discussion

Postby jacdaniel » Tue Mar 05, 2019 9:37 am

For the last few years now, high pressing and attacking football has been our identity. 
It was at the back that we had issues.  Poor GK's and centre half partnerships. 
I was really excited this season to see how we'd do with VVD and Alisson in the team.

But we have stopped the high intensity pressing.  Perhaps to try avoid injuries?  Perhaps Klopp thinks its unsustainable?

Either way, the pressing was the key to our attacking football and scoring goals.
We're not blessed with creative midfielders so a slower attack is difficult.

This season, 2019 in particular, we've become extremely boring to watch at times.  We're not creating chances, not scoring goals, no urgency or intensity in our game. 

To me, this is a bigger concern than dropping back in the title race. 
For the first time under Klopp, I don't really know what he is trying to achieve in terms of style of play.
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Postby Lallana in Pyjamas » Tue Mar 05, 2019 9:41 am

The style of play was changed because we were never going to win the league going gung ho - we were letting in too many goals


The change has worked - we are one point away from the top with 9 games left

The players still press high but at times there is a bit more of a measured approach

We are creating chances - we just aren’t taking them

This is our best season is decades yet people are bored or worried ? Seriously ?
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Postby redshade » Tue Mar 05, 2019 9:57 am

I do miss when we obliterated teams in a quick 2-3 goal frenzy of 10 mins or so. Our attack was devasting and exciting to watch.

I guess in order to have a solid defense (leak less goals) we've had to ease on the pressing game.
I have also noticed our fluidity and intrinsic passing is not the same. Mane,Firmi and Salah used to make the oppo look pathetic. It was soo beautiful to watch.

However this season i feel maybe Klopp has changed the lads roles and tactics. Firmino plays more deeper and without a creative mid driving forward we do seem to lack a player joining in the attack.
In 16 we had Lallana driving forward. In 17 Couts and in 18 Ox.
This year apart from Salah,Mane and Firmy there is no one else driving forward.

Realistically we've just got Mane and Salah uptop. Firmino deeper and a bunch of DMs.

With the amount of breaks we've had sincr getting kicked out from comps i would have expected the lads to be fresher than ever.

I think Klopp has abandoned his "heavy metal" game and is happy with trying to nick a 1-0 win at times.

We can't always play heavu metal footy however you would expect us to try it in pockets so we can wrap up a game. What baffles me is how we seemed happy with a draw when we could have butchered mannure.

When we slaughtered Watford i thought yes we are back. But then against Everton we look edgy and all over the place esp in the 2nd half. I mean we can't blitz teams always 3 or 4 nil however you would expect us to press them hard and use some heavy metal footy in order to try and come away with 3 points!

I don't know, maybe Buvac was the "brains" of our attacking flow.

Like few posters said how we missed an opportunity in Jan to sorted a att mid. Knowing that Ox will be out until mid March and Lallana is past it i feel we definitely screwed up the jan transfer window opportunity.
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Postby jacdaniel » Tue Mar 05, 2019 10:09 am

Lallana in Pyjamas » Tue Mar 05, 2019 8:41 am wrote:The style of play was changed because we were never going to win the league going gung ho - we were letting in too many goals


The change has worked - we are one point away from the top with 9 games left

The players still press high but at times there is a bit more of a measured approach

We are creating chances - we just aren’t taking them

This is our best season is decades yet people are bored or worried ? Seriously ?


We were gifted a last minute winner against Everton at Anfield. 
Last minute equalizer against Chelsea.
City missing a peno at Anfield.
United losing 4 players to injury in 45 mins at OT.
No major controversial decisions against us.

We've been very fortunate in our PL campaign this season.

Looking at our 2019 form in particular, yes I am worried.  We've been knocked out of the FA Cup at the first hurdle.  Had a chance to go 10 points clear in the PL, now we are 1 point behind.  We have to go to Germany and score a goal to go through in the CL, something we are not very good at doing away from home.
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Postby jacdaniel » Tue Mar 05, 2019 10:21 am

redshade » Tue Mar 05, 2019 8:57 am wrote:I do miss when we obliterated teams in a quick 2-3 goal frenzy of 10 mins or so. Our attack was devasting and exciting to watch.

I guess in order to have a solid defense (leak less goals) we've had to ease on the pressing game.
I have also noticed our fluidity and intrinsic passing is not the same. Mane,Firmi and Salah used to make the oppo look pathetic. It was soo beautiful to watch.

However this season i feel maybe Klopp has changed the lads roles and tactics. Firmino plays more deeper and without a creative mid driving forward we do seem to lack a player joining in the attack.
In 16 we had Lallana driving forward. In 17 Couts and in 18 Ox.
This year apart from Salah,Mane and Firmy there is no one else driving forward.

Realistically we've just got Mane and Salah uptop. Firmino deeper and a bunch of DMs.

With the amount of breaks we've had sincr getting kicked out from comps i would have expected the lads to be fresher than ever.

I think Klopp has abandoned his "heavy metal" game and is happy with trying to nick a 1-0 win at times.

We can't always play heavu metal footy however you would expect us to try it in pockets so we can wrap up a game. What baffles me is how we seemed happy with a draw when we could have butchered mannure.

When we slaughtered Watford i thought yes we are back. But then against Everton we look edgy and all over the place esp in the 2nd half. I mean we can't blitz teams always 3 or 4 nil however you would expect us to press them hard and use some heavy metal footy in order to try and come away with 3 points!

I don't know, maybe Buvac was the "brains" of our attacking flow.

Like few posters said how we missed an opportunity in Jan to sorted a att mid. Knowing that Ox will be out until mid March and Lallana is past it i feel we definitely screwed up the jan transfer window opportunity.


Good post! 
Thats the most baffling thing, surely we can play some of the heavy metal football at times.
Our fixture list hasn't been hectic. 

I can understand nicking wins early in the season if it means coming into top form around Feb for the business end of the season.
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Postby Lallana in Pyjamas » Tue Mar 05, 2019 10:23 am

No decisions against us ? Really ?

Both Kompany and Fernandinho should have walked in the game

We have had clear penalty shots including a blatant one in the Manc game

The games you highlighted are tough games - we played Chelsea when they were on a great run of form and we should have won that game but missed chances , we missed chances in both the City games

Don’t care about the FA Cup - it was a pure second string team against a very strong Prem Team

CL is still in our hands and again we created the better chances in the home game


This is our best season for decades
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Postby jacdaniel » Tue Mar 05, 2019 10:41 am

Lallana in Pyjamas » Tue Mar 05, 2019 9:23 am wrote:No decisions against us ? Really ?

Both Kompany and Fernandinho should have walked in the game

We have had clear penalty shots including a blatant one in the Manc game

The games you highlighted are tough games - we played Chelsea when they were on a great run of form and we should have won that game but missed chances , we missed chances in both the City games

Don’t care about the FA Cup - it was a pure second string team against a very strong Prem Team

CL is still in our hands and again we created the better chances in the home game


This is our best season for decades


But it won't mean a thing if we don't actually win something. 
We've lost so much momentum in the league that its hard to suddenly see us winning 9 games in a row.  (which is probably what we need)
Our away form in big games is not good, particularly in Europe... its going to be very tough to go through in CL.

And its our failure to play with intensity and score goals that will have cost us.
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Postby Lallana in Pyjamas » Tue Mar 05, 2019 10:46 am

jacdaniel » Tue Mar 05, 2019 9:41 am wrote:
Lallana in Pyjamas » Tue Mar 05, 2019 9:23 am wrote:No decisions against us ? Really ?

Both Kompany and Fernandinho should have walked in the game

We have had clear penalty shots including a blatant one in the Manc game

The games you highlighted are tough games - we played Chelsea when they were on a great run of form and we should have won that game but missed chances , we missed chances in both the City games

Don’t care about the FA Cup - it was a pure second string team against a very strong Prem Team

CL is still in our hands and again we created the better chances in the home game


This is our best season for decades


But it won't mean a thing if we don't actually win something. 
We've lost so much momentum in the league that its hard to suddenly see us winning 9 games in a row.  (which is probably what we need)
Our away form in big games is not good, particularly in Europe... its going to be very tough to go through in CL.

And its our failure to play with intensity and score goals that will have cost us.


What did we win last year ? How many points behind City did we end up

https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/47449256
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Postby jacdaniel » Tue Mar 05, 2019 11:03 am

We won nothing last year due to our hugely inept GK. 

I hope you realize that I'm not trying to take anything away from Klopp or the team. 
But we could really do with the attacking form we had in the past. 
We would have steam rolled those United and Everton teams previously.

We don't seem capable of reproducing that form and getting the goals, and thats a concern. 

I've seen us lose titles by being too gung ho.
I've also seen us lose titles by being too defensive amd having too many draws. 
We need the right balance.
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Postby only me » Tue Mar 05, 2019 11:53 am

Klopp fell in love with his new system...but it stopped working month's ago...It's a great question why we aren't reverting to last year style of play.
I think it has to do with Klopp being Klopp...Stubborn.
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Postby Red Rum » Tue Mar 05, 2019 12:28 pm

It feels a bit weird this season. We have had our best start and points tally for many years, but we are still to hit our top form this season, and have stuttered in many games.

Defence is a lot better, but we are over-reliant on our front three to get us goals. For me the midfield is letting us down, with no creativity/assists, and no goals to chip in either. Milner has scored just three, the rest TWO between them. Stevie G, ALonso, Dirk Kuyt back in the day, used to score loads.

Basically, If it isn't happening for the front three, the rest haven't got a clue how to score, hence the reason we have drawn so many.

The midfield is letting us down this season, and we are not controlling the middle of the park in games either. It's obvious., and Jurgen needs to address it in the summer with TWO stella signings.

Sign the right players, aged about 25 ish and we could dominate for the next ten years, as our defence and attack are fairly youngish.

We're still in the title race though, for now.
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Postby ycsatbjywtbiastkamb » Tue Mar 05, 2019 1:18 pm

Yeah it's the midfield that's letting us down, when we play with an AM we lose control of the midfield mainly because we haven't got 2 CM's capable of holding the fort. City have got a 33 year old who does it on his own.
You look at our team and City's team and they have a much better balance in terms of the numbers of attacking and defensive players in their starting XI, they have much more of an even split.
Our starting XI is weighted heavily in favour of our defence.
There's nothing wrong with our front 3, they just need some help, stick them in City's line up with the likes of De Bruyne and one of the 2 Silva's behind them and they'd run amok.
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Postby Pig Catcher » Tue Mar 05, 2019 1:38 pm

Teams have adapted to us and their tactics have changed. It was always going to happen after what we did last year. I mean Marco Silva, an apparent football purist, felt the need to play longball football against us on the weekend. Bayern Munich came to Anfield and sat in their own box. Even Guardiola felt the need to comprise his principles when they came to Anfield this year when they played far more conservatively. And it’s not just happening at Anfield. Do you really think these things would have happened in 16/17 or 17/18?

We need to continue with our evolution and add to our counterattacking and counterpressing quality and become a side that can also break down stubborn opposition better. That means improving the midfield and also getting better competition/cover at fullback. We really could have done with Fekir or a quality alternative but we’ll have to wait until the summer. But it’s hard to complain too much considering the money spent on a GK, CB and DM and the subsequent improvement defensively.
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Postby woof woof ! » Thu Mar 07, 2019 11:43 am

jacdaniel » Tue Mar 05, 2019 9:37 am wrote:For the last few years now, high pressing and attacking football has been our identity. 
It was at the back that we had issues.  Poor GK's and centre half partnerships. 
I was really excited this season to see how we'd do with VVD and Alisson in the team.

But we have stopped the high intensity pressing.  Perhaps to try avoid injuries?  Perhaps Klopp thinks its unsustainable?

Either way, the pressing was the key to our attacking football and scoring goals.
We're not blessed with creative midfielders so a slower attack is difficult.

This season, 2019 in particular, we've become extremely boring to watch at times.  We're not creating chances, not scoring goals, no urgency or intensity in our game. 

To me, this is a bigger concern than dropping back in the title race. 
For the first time under Klopp, I don't really know what he is trying to achieve in terms of style of play.


Mate whilst we're not showing the fizz and flair displayed in previous seasons, this term we've conceded fewer goals than any other team and only Man City have scored more than us.
Our attack may have been stuttering in recent games but I'm confident it will return to form.
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Postby ycsatbjywtbiastkamb » Thu Mar 07, 2019 1:35 pm

Our style of play has gone right out of the window, we've gone from one of the most exciting sides to watch in Europe to a team that plays slow functional football.
Yes we needed to tighten up at the back and yes we probably needed to learn how to conserve energy at certain points (no point in going hell for leather chasing a 4th and 5th goal when the points were already in the bag etc) but imo we should have tried to build on the style we had last year not totally discard it.
We have admittedly become a much more consistent side but I think we have lost that ability that we had last year to really take it to the big hitters, we've turned into flat track bullies i.e very adept at beating the lesser lights but not so great against our direct rivals.
Could you see us doing what United did last night? Last season I could, this season I couldn't.
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