Terrace Talk: Liverpool rollercoaster ride shows no sign of ending

4-0 one game, 0-5 the next. He promised you a wild ride, and you’ve got one.

The very definition of a rollercoaster: Vertigo-inducing highs and stomach-churning lows.

Those who are too old or too scared for such shenanigans need to get off now. It won’t be improving any time soon.

Coutinho was a soap opera and a half, a helpful distraction from the defensive business Klopp and co should have done but studiously, negligently ignored.

Oxlade-Chamberlain? Really? Never seen much in him frankly, but it’s a team game and we’ve had so many ‘final’ pieces in the jigsaw since 1990 the least obvious one might just be it.

On Saturday the genius of a manager decided we could defuse Sergio Aguero with Ragnar Klavan… you tell me, because I’m all out of guesses.

Maybe he just wanted to stem the flow of vitriol towards Lovren? Better the devil you know, and all that rot — only it’s outlined the fact we’ve got two devil centre-halves and one half-decent Bosman. That’s it.

It’s even made Moreno look less of a train wreck but that day is coming, make no mistake. Leopards, spots, etc.

All the talk before City was about what we’d do to them, with our Magnificent Three up front. After an hour, none of them were on the pitch.

The day didn’t start too badly, if anything we were the better side, but the yawning defensive chasm isn’t the only flaw.

Liverpool can look great going forward but it’s nowhere near clinical enough. Five or six chances for every goal won’t get you very far.

After Klavan waved Aguero through, we reached the turning point. Yes, of course it was “contentious” because people were disagreeing.

A nation’s distaste for Liverpool made it seem as though it was just one-eyed fans saying Mane shouldn’t have walked. What, like Gary Neville you mean?

It changed the whole afternoon, obviously. Since cards are supposed to be a deterrent, it’s difficult to see what Mane can do in the future.

“Don’t raise your foot 40 yards from goal because the goalkeeper might be racing out to head it”? That’s harsh.

The day deteriorated very quickly. Liverpool can’t defend with 11, so the idea of swift readjustment and damage limitation was Utopian, to quote perpetual failure Roy Hodgson.

The man who thought Klavan could cope with City dragged Salah off. The notion of defending from the front, worrying opponents so much they can’t fully commit to
attack, was pragmatically
discarded.

“Start preparing for the Champions League” was the obvious message. Everybody else had to stand there and take it.

Call it patronising, call it petty, but I can’t take City seriously even at such a grim moment like this. It’s all so obviously fake, especially for those old enough to remember all their comical nadirs spread over 30-plus years.

It’s getting a bit niggly, though. Booing when someone’s been flat out cold for five minutes wasn’t our finest hour admittedly but constant singing about Gerrard falling over reveals they know they won that title through the rancid bitterness of others. The Hillsborough-chant-it’s-OK-to-sing, “always the victim”, reflects badly on them too.

They’re as dodgy at the back as we are, so Mane’s red saw them dodge a bullet they’ll be lucky to avoid in future, especially in Europe.

That’s their problem. We’ve enough of our own to sift through, not the least of which is the Teflon- coated manager who gurned his way through a post-0-5 interview like it was nothing at all to get stroppy about.

Reality bit, and bit deep. Many will hide behind the sending off, which is fairly disconcerting. There’s almost four months to go before Liverpool can try and fix things, that’s before you take into account the usual wear and tear under Klopp and the greater workload which ominously starts this Wednesday.

Still, Coutinho will make it all better…


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