EPL

Carragher worried by Liverpool's 'non-existent' creativity

By Sports Desk January 05, 2021

Jamie Carragher has criticised Liverpool's performance after a 1-0 away loss to Southampton continued their recent slump.

The Premier League champions went down to defeat courtesy of an early goal from their former striker Danny Ings on Monday.

Liverpool had drawn their previous two games against West Brom and Newcastle United, while they also recently dropped points against Brighton and Hove Albion and Fulham.

Manager Klopp felt the Southampton defeat was down to an early mistake by Trent Alexander-Arnold and a failure to award his side penalties.

But Carragher was baffled to see Liverpool not bombarding the Southampton goal in the latter stages.

Aside from their 7-0 win over Crystal Palace, the former Reds defender has been concerned by their lack of creativity, particularly away from home.

"The big worry is where are the goals and creation coming from, because it has been non-existent," Carragher said on Sky Sports.

"This Liverpool team is amazing but it is going through one of its first real rough patches it has been through in the past two seasons.

"I did not see that coming, I expected a reaction from Liverpool on the back of two really poor performances. We have just seen another one."

LACK OF SHOTS ON TARGET

Fraser Forster – who kept his first top-flight clean sheet in over three years - made a save from Sadio Mane in the 75th minute in what proved to be Liverpool's only shot on target.

That was also their longest wait for an attempt on target in a Premier League match since December 2015. 

Klopp's men have failed to score in back-to-back Premier League games for the first time since May 2018, having found the net in each of their 21 previous outings.

Opta data shows that after having eight attempts on target in the astonishing win over Palace, Liverpool have mustered just seven across their last three Premier League matches.

Carragher added: "Liverpool's away form this season is so poor. 

"When it comes to chances created, they have not looked like scoring. Did Fraser Forster have to make a good save, a big save? Did anyone miss a real chance where they had to score?

"That is a really big worry for Liverpool at the moment, in terms of what they are creating away from home. It is nowhere near enough.

"If you take that Aston Villa result out, Liverpool have done quite well defensively and that is quite worrying.

"At times I watch them and think where is the goal coming from.

"The big problem for me, if you go back to the last game against Newcastle, yes, [Mohamed] Salah missed chances and Mane missed chances, but if they don't score then who else is going to score?

"Take out the Crystal Palace game and nobody else has scored away from home for Liverpool who was available. The other one is Diogo Jota who scored against Brighton."

MIDFIELD STRUGGLES TO CREATE

Starting midfielders Thiago Alcantara, Georginio Wijnaldum and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain combined for just one created chance.

When it comes to chances created from open play per 90 minutes this season, Liverpool only have two players in the Premier League's top 30 - forwards Salah (1.67, 12th) and Mane (1.55, 18th).

Aston Villa standout Jack Grealish (3.13), Manchester United attacking midfielder Bruno Fernandes (2.97) and Manchester City playmaker Kevin De Bruyne (2.50) lead the statistical category. 

"There was the freak result against Crystal Palace but look at chances created from open play," continued Carragher.

"Last season's average was 10 from open play. But they are not creating what you would associate with a top team this season.

"Look at the average chances created from open play away from home [7.8 this season] and they are down in seventh.

"When you are a top team like Liverpool you should be in the top two or three for everything offensively."

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