Klopp laments ‘unacceptable’ Liverpool defending after 4-1 Man City defeat

Liverpool’s hopes of finishing in the top four suffered a blow today after they were convincingly beaten 4-1 by rivals Manchester City at the Etihad.

Liverpool took the lead after 16 minutes when Mohamed Salah finished clinically into the top corner from 14 yards out after Diogo Jota had got in behind the home defence.

Man City attacker Jack Grealish then had to make a crucial interception to stop Salah from making it two-nil and within a minute Pep Guardiola’s side raced up the field to equalise. Grealish once again played a key role, the 27-year-old winger squaring to World Cup winner Julian Alvarez who slotted home from close range.

Just after the break and City took control, the brilliant Kevin de Bruyne scored his 100th career by stroking home a Riyad Mahrez cutback.

IIkay Gundogan effectively sealed the win for City in the 57th minute when he calmly fired into the net from a few yards out after some pinball in the Liverpool six-yard box.

Man-of-the-match Jack Grealish put the icing on the cake with 15 minutes left to play when he steered home a De Bruyne pullback.

Speaking afterwards Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp was clearly unhappy with the performance of his struggling defensive unit.

“The first half was one we’ve seen a few times when we’ve played here,” Klopp told BBC’s MOTD. City always have more possession, but we had spells. We played calm, composed and caused them problems.

“Scored a wonderful goal, had another big moment but concede. It was unlucky how the ball went through [Andy] Robertson’s legs and they finish it off but coming out after half time and conceding two quick goals broke everything down.

“The goals, how we conceded is difficult to accept – we didn’t put in a challenge for either. That’s absolutely not acceptable to be honest. City completely in control after that and we were open and they could do whatever they wanted. That they only scored one more goal is well, thank you. It could’ve been different and that’s really bad news for us.

“In the end, we had moments but in general how we lost everything, unacceptable. 3-1 down is difficult here but there was nothing more there, four-ish players had an OK game and the rest were somewhere I don’t know. Three days and we play again against another strong team. Tomorrow is a big day for us because we have to work with what we saw today because we see it more often now.”

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