Liverpool’s profligacy annoys Klopp as home winning streak comes to an end
Juergen Klopp was frustrated by Liverpool’s lack of killer instinct as Burnley became the first visiting side to avoid defeat at Anfield in the English Premier League for 18 months in a 1-1 draw on Saturday (July 11).
Andy Robertson’s first-half header had the champions on course to maintain their perfect home record this season and close in on a record points tally in the English top flight.
But the Reds were made to pay for a host of missed chances when Jay Rodriguez’s fine finish earned a point to further Burnley’s late push for a place in Europe next season.
“We left the door open, we didn’t close it. We should have scored two, three, four goals at least,” said Klopp, who was also irked by referee David Coote’s lenient attitude to Burnley’s physical approach.
“The ref let all these challenges today happen. When the ball comes in the box, Burnley are always dangerous. They stayed completely in the game, they just did what they wanted to do. It is frustrating because we should have scored much earlier.”
Liverpool can still break Manchester City’s record points haul of 100 two seasons ago, but will now need to win all three of their remaining matches against Arsenal, Chelsea and Newcastle.
Klopp has insisted he is not looking to rewrite the record books, but there was no sign of the German easing up with a first title in 30 years long since won.
Robertson and Sadio Mane were recalled from the side that won 3-1 at Brighton and Hove Albion on Wednesday with only injured captain Jordan Henderson and Trent Alexander-Arnold missing from Klopp’s strongest XI.
Salah’s double in midweek brought his goals tally to 19 and kept him in the running for a third Golden Boot in as many seasons at Liverpool, and only Nick Pope in the Burnley goal prevented the Egyptian closing in on Jamie Vardy (22) at the top of the scoring charts.
Pope turned a fiercely struck Salah volley over before spreading himself well to deny Liverpool’s top scorer in another one-on-one.
The opening goal came from a much more unlikely source as Fabinho picked out Robertson’s run and the Scotland captain looped a header into the far corner for his first goal since November.
Pope and Liverpool’s Alisson Becker are battling for the Golden Glove and the England international showed why he is in the lead with 14 clean sheets as he kept his side in the game once more before half-time to turn Mane’s powerful shot over the bar.
Chances continued to come and go for the hosts after the break. Remarkably, despite Liverpool’s home form, their No. 9 is still yet to score at Anfield in the league this season as Roberto Firmino hit the post to extend his wait for a home goal.
Liverpool’s profligacy was punished 21 minutes from time when Rodriguez’s brilliant finish from James Tarkowski’s knock-down beat Alisson from the edge of the area.
Burnley then had the best chance to win the game in the final stages as Alisson flapped at another set-piece and the ball fell for substitute Johann Berg Gudmundsson, who hit the crossbar.
“That would be pushing it a bit,” admitted Burnley manager Sean Dyche had his side snatched victory.
“Forget there is no one here. It’s still very difficult to come here against sides like that. They don’t give you a breather. We felt if we could stay in it as the game wore on, we might find moments and we did.”
A prized point moves Dyche’s men up to ninth, with eighth possibly good enough for a place in the Europa League should Manchester City’s two-season ban from European competitions be upheld. – AFP