Jürgen Klopp has taken just one point from his two league games at Anfield so far, and this is mainly due to conceding a late set piece goal in both matches. I thought it would therefore be interesting to see how Dortmund fared with dead ball situations to see if we can expect any change to his fortunes with Liverpool.
As Liverpool slumped to their third league defeat in five games, I couldn’t help but notice that three things I had identified as possible concerns regarding the Reds in recent months all seem to be coming to pass at once.
This isn’t a ‘Ha, told you so!’ exercise, but I thought it would be worth re-iterating the points as they seem to lie at the heart of Liverpool’s troubles at the moment, and I’ve tried to look a little deeper to the cause of the issues too. Continue reading
Following the publication of this excellent statistical analysis of Liverpool’s 2013/14 campaign by Colin Trainor, there has been a lot of debate on Twitter about whether the Reds have been lucky to score as many goals as they have this season.
One particular aspect that interested me is set pieces, as Liverpool have scored more goals via this route than any other team in the Premier League this season: 24.
After a frenetic, see-sawing Merseyside derby (which was Liverpool’s highest scoring league draw since the 4-4 with Arsenal at Anfield in 2009), I guess the most important facts from a Liverpool perspective are that they now have four points more than they had from the corresponding fixtures last season, seventy points from the last thirty-eight league games, and have only had more than twenty-four points from the first twelve games four times in the Premier League era.
Brendan Rodgers has now taken the same amount of league points (eighty-five) as Kenny Dalglish did in his second tenure, but in six fewer games. Overall, the Reds are doing pretty well.
It recently occurred to me that Liverpool have dropped a lot of points this season by conceding goals from set pieces, West Brom’s opener in their win at Anfield being the most recent example. It’s also a well established truth that the Reds are poor at attacking set plays too; there was a ‘Pool fanzine in the 1980′s called ‘Another Wasted Corner’, after all.
I therefore thought I’d check how the Reds have fared at both ends of the pitch in comparison to their Premier League rivals this season, to establish if they actually are particularly weak in this area.