Didi Hamann: One dimensional Liverpool must change approach to out-gun Arsenal

The former Reds legend on why Jurgen Klopp needs to learn you can’t outrun teams in the Premier League and on how the Liverpool boss must be ready to wield the axe.

The physicality and intensity is much higher in England than anywhere Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has been before. You cannot outrun teams in the Premier League, full stop!

That’s something the players and the manager have to learn, because they can only play one way. You need to be flexible, variable and overall you must have two or three answers to the questions teams in this league will ask of you.

At this moment in time Liverpool under Klopp are one dimensional, that’s why they find it hard to win when things aren’t going their way.

You need to be winning against clubs like Leicester in their current position on a regular basis. When you look at when Liverpool were last in the Champions League – and it’s been a few years now – if they carry on like this it will be at least another season before they get back there.

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Jamie Carragher’s opinion that some players should ‘hang their heads in shame’ after their performance on Monday might be a bit harsh for one game in isolation.

However, clearly what has happened in the last seven or eight weeks – with only a single victory for the Reds in both January and February – has been pretty disastrous. Something’s got to change, because if they carry on like this things will get a lot worse.

I still can’t understand why the left back position wasn’t sorted in the summer, because it was quite clear Klopp didn’t fancy Alberto Moreno. James Milner’s been forced to play a full season there – he’s done a good job – but he’s limited in that position and it’s not natural to him.

As for Lucas at centre back, I don’t mind seeing him there when you play at home against a team where you know you’re going to boss the possession. But when you’re away from home against a team with pace on the counter attack he’s not the right selection.

Klopp had Ragnar Klavan on the bench and he’s let Mamadou Sakho go. Looking at the bench they had before the game on Monday you have to wonder if things do go wrong who’s going to change the game?

Things really aren’t looking too bright at the moment for Liverpool.

Ultimately that comes down to the manager to change, but he must be getting to the end of his tether with some of these players. Klopp’s backed them at every opportunity but after his post-game interview Jurgen now sees that some of them are simply not good enough.

Emre Can really needs to define now what kind of player that he is. Is he a defensive midfielder or an attacking midfielder – does he even know?

I don’t believe in all this ‘box-to-box’ player talk, you have to pick your strongest suit defensively or offensively. My fellow German is as much to blame as everyone else there this season, but I don’t think it’s fair that supporters single him out.

However, Emre has got to decide what kind of player he is and then perform, if he wants to take that next step to be a Liverpool player for years.

As for rumours about players being upset with some of Klopp’s training regime, I’m not big into these modern methods. Personally, I wouldn’t have liked training in the evening either.

Saturday’s 5.30pm kick off is a six-pointer for both Liverpool and Arsenal as there is a massive three points on offer at the expense of a direct rival.

If Liverpool lose it will be very hard for them to get back in the Champions League race, Arsenal on the other hand still have a chance to qualify for me even if they get beaten.

Neither side can afford to drop points because if you look at the teams around Liverpool and Arsenal – Chelsea, Tottenham, Man City and even United – the worrying thing for is that those clubs seem to be coming into form at the right time.

If you find yourself five or six points behind those teams it’s going to be very hard to make up the difference.

It’s not hard to see another Liverpool/Arsenal goal-fest. Defensively neither team are solid to say the least. But they both have their strengths going forward.

I’d be betting on over 3.5 or 4.5 goals, it’s very hard to put faith in either team so I’ll go with a score draw.

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What do you think?