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Liverpool have had a fine record against to Premier League’s sides this season, which is just about the beginning for Jurgen Klopp’s side as they prepares for their clash against Arsenal this Saturday. Klopp’s side lost 3-1 to Leicester on Monday which shows how poor the Reds defensive weakness is in a season that once promised much continued to unravel.
They were top of the of the league in November, they start there crucial clash against Arsenal in fifth place and could be sixth by kick-off, as Manchester United if by chance will move above them if they beat Bournemouth in Satuday’s early game.
The German boss preferred 4-3-3 starting lineup has been awesome against the rest of the current top six in eight matches this season against Chelsea, Arsenal, Manchester City, Manchester United, and Tottenham Hotspur have won four and drawn four.
However, the Reds have not been impressive against struggling clubs in the lower half of the table. The Reds boss has not been helped by lack of stability in his central defence role, with Dejan Lovren out of the squad for the last month with a knee injury.
He had to paired midfielder Lucas Leiva with Joel Matip in the centre of defence against the Foxes, and that showed inconsistent with the pace of Jamie Vardy. Even with the Bosnia and Herzegovina defender fit, though, their defence has been a problem for the manager, who has used 20 different centre-back combinations since his 17 months in charge.
The Reds are also facing difficulties elsewhere in the squad, striker Daniel Sturridge missed their defeat against Leicester, having just registered five league matches all season, it appears the former Chelsea star is likely to leave Anfield at the end of the season.
There is one other sobering statistic for Klopp to consider; after 55 matches in charge, he has amassed 94 points, three fewer than his predecessor Brendan Rodgers had managed at the same stage of his reign.
Goalkeeper Simon Mignolet is trying to stay positive, saying: “You can use criticism as some sort of energy to get yourselves back up again and push yourselves even further and harder, looking forward to the next opportunity. That’s what we have to do.”
At the Emirates, the issue with the club boss Arsene Wenger’s future with his side till march on, with the Frenchman yet to confirm whether he will remain with Arsenal and his 21-year stay beyond the end of the season.
Wenger has announced earlier last month that he will make his decision and that of the club’s interest at heart.
“My preference is always to remain the same,” he said. “I’m not looking for jobs at other clubs, I’m just focused on me getting to the next level and trying to improve.
“I’ve been here 20 years and I have had many chances to leave. So I don’t have to convince you my preference is always Arsenal.
“But of course I am objective and lucid enough to make the right decision for myself and the club as well.”
Poor performances have found the Gunners 13 points behind league leaders Chelsea but they’re one point ahead of Liverpool as they head into the match at Anfield. The French boss went on saying:
“We have to focus on our next game, we have a game in hand and things can change quickly,” he said.
“You need exceptional results and Chelsea to fail so I think it is more important to focus on our next game rather than dreaming of coming back to Chelsea.”
The Emirates outfit has Laurent Koscielny and Aaron Ramsey fit again, while Danny Welbeck and Olivier Giroud are also available for the club.
The Arsenal manager is also wary of playing his team’s first game in 12 days on the back of Liverpool’s poor performance at Leicester after a similar break between games.
“Liverpool is always high intensity, the fans are behind their team and they play at a good pace,”
“It is important to switch on quick. Liverpool have shown that against Leicester. It’s vital to start strongly,” Wenger said.