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Defensive issues will plague Leeds’ Marcelo Bielsa more than they will keep Jurgen Klopp up at night

Thrill of the opening-day fixture was in large part down to errors at the back on both sides

Alisson is in a poor run of form, thwarting just 17 of the last 35 shots on target he has faced. Virgil van Dijk has made two errors directly leading to a goal in his past four Premier League games, more than he registered in his first 154 appearances.

The bad news for Liverpool is that their ‘transformers’ are erring. The good news for Liverpool is they can be confident their ‘transformers’ will return to type.

The champions of England conceded three goals to Leeds on the opening day of the season – a wondrously entertaining, overwhelming encounter – and the hosts were largely hurt by their own faults.

“The game was like it should have been, minus the three mistakes around the goals,” Jurgen Klopp analysed.

“Apart from that, it was exactly like it should be. We cannot just press them in their own box always because that’s where they play out, it’s impossible, other teams do it in a similar way, so we needed a compact formation.

“I didn’t really see us struggling defensively, it’s just the way they play, you cannot defend it 100 per cent all of the time.

“The goals we conceded, the first goal, both full-backs were deeper than the centre-halves and that should never happen in football, actually. But then you need the opponent to use this situation and they did.

“The second goal I think was a misunderstanding between Virgil and Ali. Things like this can happen – should not, but they can – and I don’t think we will see these situations very often when these two boys are not exactly clear what the other one is doing.

“The third one we changed Hendo [Jordan Henderson] not long before and our formation was moving and we didn’t close one gap. The back line played for England, Holland and Scotland four days ago – all top teams but different ways of defending.”

Klopp is accustomed to Liverpool being off shade at the start of a campaign. Last season, they allowed newly promoted Norwich 12 shots at Anfield in a 4-1 victory that wasn’t as comfortable as the scoreline suggests. In 2017-18, the Merseysiders…

Melissa Reddy

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