Rio Ferdinand has explained that a few of the Liverpool players have changed their game this season, which has had a negative impact on the team.
Pundit Ferdinand has selected the Reds attacking stars as individuals that have changed. That would mean Roberto Firmino, Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane are the men under the spotlight.
The analysis came after Liverpool’s disappointing 3-1 defeat on Tuesday against Real Madrid in the first leg of a Champions League quarter-final.
It was a game where Salah got a potentially vital away goal, but Spanish giants Madrid looked really comfortable for large spells.
Salah, Mane and Diogo Jota were the attackers that couldn’t really nick the ball off the opposition defence, with the latter starting ahead of Firmino yesterday before a second-half substitution.
“There isn’t that intensity and that press from the boys at the front. We all spoke about their goals the last two years, but as much we spoke about how they close teams down. They’ve gone away from that,” Ferdinand told BT Sport 2 (6 April).
If you’ve watched Liverpool this season, you’ll see they look miles apart from the machine they’ve been in the past couple of years to win silverware.
They are not a side right now that can steamroll through opponents, and it’s a great point that the hard work off the ball is not quite at the level that supporters have seen at Anfield.
They’re going to have to be brave to overcome a deficit against Madrid in next week’s Champions League second leg, so it’ll be interesting to see if they release the handbrake and really press high.