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Do Liverpool Have Issues With Squad Depth In 2022/23 Season?

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Do Liverpool Have Issues With Squad Depth In 2022/23 Season?

Liverpool played out a disappointing 2-2 draw against Fulham on the opening day of the season that raised concerns about their defensive capabilities and the depth of their squad.

The Reds did show resilience after being far from their best, battling back from being behind twice in the game by Aleksandar Mitrovic’s goals.

However, Jurgen Klopp will have been extremely concerned with his side’s level of performance which seemed off the pace for the first match of the campaign.

What The Odds Are Saying

The reds are from the panic station, but an injury to Thiago Alcantara will be a cause for worry given the lack of depth Liverpool have in the middle of the park and the quality of the Spaniard.

Liverpool is currently backed in the odds to win Premier League at+320, which puts them behind Manchester City by a significant margin in the minds of the oddsmakers.

City’s impressive performance against West Ham United will also come into consideration, but the season is 38 games and this campaign will be very different from others due to the World Cup that lands smack in the middle of the term.

Varying it Up

Liverpool will have quite a few players playing in the competition, and Klopp will be concerned about the additional game time and rigors of high-intensity football.

His side has played a lot of games over the last three seasons in a short space of time, including their deep runs in all three cup competitions in Europe and domestically in the 2021/22 campaign.

It may just be having an effect on those players that have been active on a regular basis throughout Liverpool’s outstanding run under Klopp.

<blockquote class=”twitter-tweet”><p lang=”en” dir=”ltr”>Mitrovic is the FIRST player to dribble past Virgil van Dijk and cause him to concede a penalty in a Premier League game 😳 <a href=”https://t.co/qVVrJk1k3f”>pic.twitter.com/qVVrJk1k3f</a></p>&mdash; ESPN UK (@ESPNUK) <a href=”https://twitter.com/ESPNUK/status/1555908350151430144?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>August 6, 2022</a></blockquote> <script async src=”https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js” charset=”utf-8″></script>

Virgil van Dijk was very much off the pace at the back for the Reds at Craven Cottage.

He was given the run around by Mitrovic and conceded a costly penalty in the second half just when the Reds were in the ascendency, bringing down the Serbia international with a loose challenge.

The Dutchman didn’t seem comfortable over the course of the game, whether it was new-season rust or a sign of a potential decline due to fatigue remains to be seen.

But, with the additional workload of the World Cup, with the Netherlands expected to make a deep surge in the competition, Klopp will have his worries.

<blockquote class=”twitter-tweet”><p lang=”en” dir=”ltr”>4️⃣5️⃣0️⃣ Reds appearances up for the skipper!<a href=”https://twitter.com/JHenderson?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>@JHenderson</a> ❤ <a href=”https://t.co/0mCmrZTVUH”>pic.twitter.com/0mCmrZTVUH</a></p>&mdash; Liverpool FC (@LFC) <a href=”https://twitter.com/LFC/status/1553395762125586439?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>July 30, 2022</a></blockquote> <script async src=”https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js” charset=”utf-8″></script>

Signs of Further Crisis?

Jordan Henderson was also not at his best. The 32-year-old may just be showing signs that his influence, which has been so crucial in allowing the Reds to sustain their excellence, may just be on the wane.

Henderson has been a key leader for Klopp on the field, and although he still carries the authority of being the skipper, his performance against Fulham was not encouraging.

He too will have World Cup duties with England, where he could be on the outside looking in of the starting line-up.

Klopp will not be too disappointed if Henderson does not rack up the minutes in Qatar amid his own worries about his midfield.

If no one else arrives before the end of the transfer window, the depth beyond the starting three is not overly experienced.

Whether those players are ready to deliver a title-winning standard for Liverpool is doubtful at the stage of their respective careers.

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