Liverpool are currently sitting in third place in the English Premier League with 10 points after three games played.
Despite being only 2 points off league leaders and current reigning champions Manchester City, not everyone is convinced, and many don’t believe Liverpool are anywhere near as good.
The question being asked here is, does Liverpool’s solid start to the season mask poor performances? Let’s dive straight in to find out.
How have Liverpool played so far?
In their opening game of the season on August 13th, they could only manage a 1-1 draw when they travelled to Stamford Bridge to play Chelsea. Luis Diaz put The Reds up after 18 minutes, but then Axel Disais put Chelsea level just 19 minutes later.
Chelsea had 65% possession of the ball throughout the game compared to Liverpool’s 35%, but they somehow managed to hang on and secure the all-important point.
Liverpool also conceded 13 fouls to Chelsea’s five fouls and only had one shot on target compared to Chelsea’s four. Liverpool were lucky that Chelsea didn’t add a second goal before the full-time whistle was blown.
What were the bookies saying before the game started?
Many of today’s most trusted online bookmakers, such as the bet red 32 website (aka 32red), had both teams fairly evenly priced, and it panned out pretty much just as you would have expected. Liverpool didn’t play poorly but were lucky not to lose.
How did Liverpool play against Bournemouth?
Liverpool looked much better against Bournemouth at Anfield on August 19th, beating the travelling team 3-1. However, they went down 1-0 after just three minutes, thanks to a goal from Bournemouth’s Antoine Semenyo.
It took 25 minutes before Liverpool could level the score through a Luis Diaz goal before Mo Salah added a second in the 36th minute to put The Reds 2-1 up. There were frustrations for manager Jurgen Klopp, players and fans when Alexis MacAllister saw a straight red card for a dangerous studs-up tackle in the 58th minute.
Liverpool managed to hold on to the lead and even added a third goal in the 62nd minute from Diogo Jota. They looked a little bit like the old Liverpool and had far more possession of the ball and more shots on target compared to their opponents, but it still wasn’t a convincing performance.
What happened in their game against Newcastle?
On August 27th, Liverpool travelled away to Newcastle and went 1-0 down after a goal from Anthony Gordon. Just three minutes later, Liverpool defender Virgil Van Dijk saw a straight red for bringing down Newcastle defender Isak.
Liverpool then had a bit of fortune when Newcastle manager Eddie Howe took off goalscorer Anthony Goron (arguably the best player on the pitch), and then, despite having only ten men, Liverpool went on to win the match thanks to a late brace from Darwin Nunez. The game finished 2-1 to Liverpool.
For much of this game, Newcastle looked the better side, and even had the stats to prove it. They had more possession (60%-40%), more completed passes (590-384), more passing accuracy (85%-79%), more shots on target (8-4), and more shots (23-9), but it just wasn’t to be for Newcastle. Again, another unconvincing performance from Liverpool.
They did look much better in their next game at home to Aston Villa, which then won 3-0. After the international break has finished, Liverpool will play Wolves away on September 16th, which won’t be an easy game. They also then go on to play their first Europa League group stage match against LASK on September 21st.
Liverpool will have to fight to win every game, and they look like they have a long way to go before they look as convincing as league leaders Manchester City.
Their current position in the league is definitely masking their performances, but the same can also be said of teams like Arsenal, who are currently fifth in the league. It may just be that both teams have gotten off to a slow start.