Liverpool players ‘suddenly second to everything’ says worried Graeme Souness

Liverpool players have gone from 'exhausting' their opponents to being 'vulnerable to every attack' according to three-time European Cup winner turned pundit Graeme Souness.

Jurgen Klopp's side have had a steady start to the new Premier League season with only two wins from their opening six fixtures – and were brushed aside by Napoli in the Champions League.

Souness, who won five First Division titles and three European Cups as a player at Anfield, has seen enough to worry him during the early states of Klopp's seventh season as boss.

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Speaking to the Mail, Souness said: "They have gone from a team that can hustle and exhaust an opponent, from the first minute to the last, to a team suddenly second to everything. In doing so they appear to be vulnerable to every attack."

Adding: "The need for intensity is a collective thing. It has always been that way, going back to my time as a player at the club. They like to call it 'pressing' now but when I was playing we just called it 'closing down'.

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"If one person is not doing it, the whole system breaks down and you might as well drop off and be a team that plays counter-attacking football."

Napoli ran riot in their Champions League group stage opener with a 4-1 victory in Italy, leaving Klopp feeling sorry for the supporters.

He said: "It’s a long flight from Liverpool to Napoli. For all the things they invest, I understand 100 per cent it was a very disappointing night so, of course, I put up [my hands].

"I have to say sorry for that."

Adding of the performance: "We definitely have to kind of reinvent ourselves because just basic things were not there.

"It is a difficult period, no doubt about that, but if you are not playing exceptionally well you still can defend on a really high level, we should be able to do that and we are, obviously, but in this moment we are, kind of, in between."

Concluding: "Tonight that was the least compact performance I saw for a long, long time from us and it was just, again, Napoli was really good, but we made it easy for them."


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