Monday, June 5, 2023

The 8 Factors Influencing Liverpool’s Future

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Bernard Ford
A Leicester City fan. Wants respect from the 'London based' media for clubs outside the bubble.

There have been many memorable moments this year for Liverpool. Unfortunately, most of those will be ones that fans would prefer to forget. Of course, there have been a couple of real highlights, the 7 – 0 victory over Manchester United being the main one. But as a whole, it’s fair to say that it’s been a pretty awful campaign for Klopp and his players. The form that almost took them to an unprecedented quadruple last season has disappeared completely. It’s gotten so bad at times that they are now 7,500/1 according to oddschecker. There may even be a few people looking at using a betting offer to back Klopp to be the next Premier League manager to be sacked. That’s unlikely, but it is possible.

At the moment, the club stands at a crossroads, and they have to get the next moves right if they’re going to stay towards the top of the English Premier League. In this post, we’ll take a closer look at the key factors that’ll influence Liverpool’s coming years.

Klopp: Stay or Go

Ask a selection of Liverpool fans whether they think it’s time for Klopp to go, and you won’t hear too many people saying that it is. The fans still fully support Jurgen Klopp. However, what the fans think isn’t overly important; it’s what the board and the man himself think.

It’s unlikely that Klopp would voluntarily walk away from Anfield, but stranger things have happened — if he doesn’t think he can guide the club back to glory, then he’ll stand down. On the other hand, he likely has the full backing of the board, who will recognise that this season is probably an outlier.

Saying Goodbye to Loyal Players

Klopp would admit, privately, that he’s been too loyal to his key players. He was maybe hoping that his regular band would have one more great season in their legs. Alas, that wasn’t the case — and in truth, the signs were there last season that this team was beginning to fade.

The only way Liverpool can move forward is if Klopp makes the difficult decision to say goodbye to the players who have served him so well, and it’s not entirely clear whether he’s able to do that. His commitment to his players is what made Liverpool hit such heights in the first place, but it could also be what drags them down.

Fresh Investment

Of course, you can’t just say goodbye to players without bringing fresh talent in. At the moment, it’s not clear whether Liverpool have all that much money to spend. It seems unlikely that they’ll spend big like they did when they bought Allison and Van Dijk a few seasons ago.

However, it’s equally true that they can’t rely on the team’s youth players to win the title. While players such as Harvey Elliot and Curtis Jones definitely have a future at Liverpool, they’re not yet at the level where they should be the main players.

Jude Bellingham is one player who has been linked with Liverpool, but there’s no guarantee that he would come even if Liverpool could afford him. It’s going to be a big summer transfer window for Liverpool.

Injury-Free Seasons

It’s true that there’s probably no version of this season where Liverpool were going to compete for the title. Still, their run wouldn’t look quite so bad had they had better luck with injuries. They’ve been missing some key players this campaign, so it’s little wonder that they’ve struggled to hit peak form. The injury to Luis Diaz, who at that point was Liverpool’s best player, was a particular blow.

Moving into next season, the club will have to reevaluate their fitness regimes. They’ve had more injuries than their rivals, and that suggests that it’s something they’re doing, rather than just a case of bad luck.

a football being kicked

Manchester City Issues

The fact that Liverpool were able to go head-to-head with Manchester City for so long is an achievement in itself. There’s little doubt that City have been the best team on the planet over the past few seasons. The only way that Liverpool can hope to overtake their northwest rivals is if City face their own troubles. And that’s possible — they are facing an FA inquiry, after all, which could blunt their domination. But in reality, Liverpool will have to accept that they’ll be competing for the top four places and not the title, at least for next season.

Edging Ahead of Other Rivals

But it’s not as if that will be easy, either. The Premier League is unusually strong at the moment, and it’s only going to be more competitive moving forward. Newcastle, Manchester United, Tottenham, and Chelsea will all be better next season than they have been this year.

While Liverpool have had to deal with Manchester City in recent years, they’ve also benefited from poor form from their other key rivals. But they’re all back now.

Attracting the Best Players

Liverpool have had no trouble attracting the best players to Anfield in recent years. After all, it’s pretty easy to say yes to a club that is clearly going places. But as it stands, there’s no guarantee that Liverpool are going places. They’re in a period of transition and that can make top players think twice before agreeing to move.

Liverpool will hope that the allure of Klopp, Anfield, and everything else that Liverpool have will be enough to convince players, like the aforementioned Bellingham, to join the club. But it’s not a slam dunk like it would have been a couple of years ago.

Starting Afresh 

Liverpool have had terrific success over the past few years. But now is the time to forget all about that. They were high moments that will live in the club’s history forever, but the main focus now has to be on looking to the future. The only way the club will move forward is if they start from a clean slate and get themselves up for the challenge, just as they did years ago when Klopp first arrived at the club.

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