Alisson has been open about Liverpool’s attitude issues this season, and there are only two answers
While Liverpool has floundered aimlessly in the dark for much of the season, there has been one steady glimmer of light that the rest of the club would be wise to follow.
Therefore Alisson Becker is probably better equipped than most to render a verdict on a season that, while still more than two months away, is already certain to have far-reaching consequences for the future.
And when asked to assess the Reds’ Champions League round of 16 elimination against Real Madrid on Wednesday, the goalie nailed the nail on the head, as any possibility of a stirring comeback was shattered by a lacklustre and increasingly indifferent display from Jurgen Klopp’s side.
“We had a terrific, incredible game against Manchester United,” stated the goalkeeper. “Soon after, there was an unexplainable match against Bournemouth. And against Real Madrid, we didn’t play poorly, but we didn’t play enough to tie the game. There was a lack of attitude, and we were missing in many ways.”
Alisson has been aware of the problem for quite some time. This was the goalie commenting following the Premier League defeat at Manchester United in August.
“When teams play against us, they know how we play and they try to exploit it and use it against us.” “He stated. “How do we make it better? It is changing as a result of our attitude. We make a few blunders during the games, and you are penalised for them.”
Here was the Brazilian talking about the underwhelming 2-1 win over Leicester City over the Christmas holiday, shortly after the Premier League resumed after the World Cup.
“It’s going to be a really significant period in the season now, and we need to focus,” Alisson added. “We have to improve. Maybe it’s just a mental thing. It’s not simple to change, but we can certainly accomplish it. We must do more. But we already knew that.”
“Football is a cerebral game as well,” he declared after a 3-0 defeat at Wolverhampton Wanderers in February. You step onto the field, plan your game, prepare your strategy, and then the first thing you do is make mistakes and concede? It makes no difference. It’s really annoying when things like that happen all the time, but we have to fight back.
Following the Molineux thrashing, Liverpool went on a run of 13 points from 15 games in the Premier League, with five clean sheets, culminating in the record-breaking 7-0 triumph against United.
Nevertheless, although the huge home defeat to Real Madrid in the Champions League may be viewed as a rare occurrence, the humiliating loss at rock-bottom Bournemouth in midweek and the comparably timid surrender in the Bernabeu could not. That begs the question whether the current mini-revival was the exception rather than the norm. From the start of the season, Liverpool has won only five of 15 games.
Clearly, there has been a reoccurring trend since the New Year in which more than simply the squad’s performance has been questioned. Klopp has criticized the bad body language of some of his charges on multiple occasions, which is amazing given that many of his troops were “mentality monsters” who crushed opponents for numerous years. Muscles may be fatigued after three years of nonstop football, but minds are as well.
While without breaking ranks, Alisson has once again spoken freely about what has become an apparent deficiency. That implies that the players are not only aware of the issue, but are also frustrated that it has not been handled universally. It can be rectified in two ways: through the coaching staff’s hard work, or by simply moving on players and bringing in new ones.
That is also an issue that the players, particularly the senior ones, recognize, with Virgil van Dijk saying that the onus is on Fenway Sports Group and the recruitment team to support Klopp in the proper manner during the summer transfer window.
“Certainly, players will depart; we must recruit,” he remarked. “But everyone understands that’s going to be difficult, that finding the proper players is going to be challenging, but the club has to do their duty in this case.”
Failure to qualify for the Champions League will make that job even more difficult. Transformation is required at Liverpool, in terms of philosophy, squad, and entire approach. And those on the front lines understand it better than most.