Ex Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher has said ‘Liverpool are not ready to win the Premier League’ and are two signings short of challenging the likes of Manchester City.
A stoppage time from Luis Diaz rescued a point for Liverpool as they were shockingly held to a 1-1 draw at minnows Luton Town on Sunday evening.
The result moves the Reds to third in the table, three points off leaders City, though if Tottenham beat Chelsea on Monday night the gap to the top will be five points.
It’s a big two points dropped, and Carragher believes Jurgen Klopp needs to address two major issues when the transfer window re-opens in January.
‘Liverpool still aren’t as good as Man City at stopping counter-attacks,’ the former defender said on Sky Sports.
‘Liverpool are a team who dominate possession, they have a lot of the ball, but they’re not quite as good as Man City off the ball so there are more turnovers and they lose the ball.
‘Opponents do seem to find spaces a lot more to and attack and get in behind Liverpool. Luton didn’t have the quality to really punish them, except for the goal we saw.
‘Liverpool in midfield are improved from what we saw last season, but they still haven’t got a top holding midfielder.
‘[Alexis] Mac Allister isn’t a top holding midfielder. He’s good on the ball in terms of receiving, but defensively, he finds it really tough and he lacks a bit of pace for that position.
‘In the back four, Liverpool could do with not so much a player for a specific position, but just a great defender who can almost play in a couple of positions.
‘They went with [Joe] Gomez today at left-back because they thought he would be stronger defensively. I think Liverpool could do with a player in that position on the other side at right-back and maybe release Trent [Alexander-Arnold] into midfield.
‘Liverpool are not ready to win the league. Jurgen Klopp and Liverpool supporters know that right now.
‘They want to get back into the top four. In terms of challenging again, I think they need a holding midfielder and a top-class defender.’
The issue of a defensive midfielder is one that has been known about for some time after Liverpool lost Fabinho, Jordan Henderson and James Milner over the summer, while Thiago Alcantara remains sidelined with injury.
The club attempted to sign Moises Caicedo and Romeo Lavia to replace them but lost out on both to Chelsea, eventually signing Wataru Endo and Ryan Gravenberch, but the latter is the only natural holding midfielder available.
The Japan captain has only been trusted to start one league game so far however, but based on the Luton result he may well be back in the team for the Reds’ next game against Brentford.