Thiago Alcantara did something “a little bit worrying” in Liverpool’s defeat to Arsenal on Sunday, according to Danny Murphy.
The Reds lost 3-2 to the Gunners at the Emirates, in a game Jurgen Klopp admits has ended their hopes of challenging for the Premier League.
In their analysis of Bukayo Saka’s goal, Arsenal’s second, Murphy and Dion Dublin picked out the Liverpool players who should have done better.
Dublin told Match of the Day that Trent Alexander-Arnold should have left Jordan Henderson to deal with Gabriel Martinelli before the Arsenal star crossed for Saka to tap home.
“For the [Saka] goal, it’s a three-on-three and I’m thinking, ‘this shouldn’t be a problem’, because you can see that there’s a three on three,” Dublin said.
“You’ve got a man each, do what you have to do. I know what Trent Alexander-Arnold is trying to do, he’s trying to help his skipper out because Martinelli’s quicker so he’s gone out of this space.
“You’ve got to trust your skipper. Stay in the middle, get Tsimikas to stay on the left, and if they stay in those positions in the three, this goal will not happen.”
Murphy highlighted Thiago’s failure to track back as a “a little bit of a concern”.
“If you watch Odegaard sprint forward, Thiago sees him – this is your central midfielder, you’re only playing with two – his reaction to try and get back in is a little bit worrying for me,” Murphy said.
“We know he’s a wonderful technician, but really he should be busting a hut to try and get back in and you shouldn’t have your striker, Nunez, overtaking you to try and get in the box to clear the cross.
“That’s a little bit of a concern, especially when you play two in the middle.”
The defeat for Klopp’s side means they’ve had their worst start to a league season in ten years and Murphy believes “complacency” has set in.
“A few months ago Liverpool were in every competition, looking at making history and winning four competitions,” Murphy added.
“The squad has not got worse in terms of players, but the mentality’s changed a little bit.
“I said before that the complacency has set in a little bit, I think for certain members of the team, and I think to then try and flick the switch and get it back on is one of the hardest things in football.”