From a Champions League final in May to ninth in the Premier League in January, what has happened to Liverpool in 2022?
Off the back of a historic season, where Liverpool were two games away from winning the quadruple, they now find themselves fighting for their Champions League future.
Defeat at Brighton on Saturday afternoon left the Reds languishing in ninth place in the Premier League, level on points with Chelsea who they play at Anfield this coming Saturday.
But where has it gone wrong for Jurgen Klopp’s men?
Neil Docking, journalist and contributor to podcast Anfield Wrap, points towards the decline of the midfield over recent years as one of the main reasons for Liverpool’s drop off this season.
“They have neglected the midfield over the course of three transfer windows, Thiago was the last midfielder they signed.
“Not replacing Gini Wijnaldum was a massive mistake, we have missed his athleticism and energy in the middle of the park.”
When asked about how fans feel about the lack of investment, Docking said: “The fans don’t like the approach the club has where if they can’t get Plan A then they won’t sign anyone else.”
The lack of energy in midfield has been a major issue for Liverpool this season, with many teams being able to overrun Jurgen Klopp’s side. This means that a midfield revamp is vital especially with Jordan Henderson getting older and the drop off of midfield anchor Fabinho proving so costly.
But Docking declared his support for Jurgen Klopp after recent questions about his future:
“100%, I still support Klopp along with the vast majority of the Liverpool fanbase,” he said. “Everything he has achieved at the club with all the success and major honours he has won.
“Jurgen will never be sacked by Liverpool even if we finish outside of the European places and I’m in no doubt that Liverpool fans believe he is the right man to take us forward.”
Docking also believes that keeping current owners FSG whilst gaining more investment would be ideal: “I don’t see FSG as the villains other people do, I think it’s a bit unfair to cast them in that light, as they delivered a first Premier League title in 30 years. So if they were to leave tomorrow you would have to say they have done a great job.
“If there was a way where we could get investment in the club and FSG remain in control that would be ideal.”