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‘I see a team under stress’ – Klopp departure ‘weighing’ on Liverpool

BBC

Two weeks is a long time in football.

Heading into the weekend before their Premier League trip to Manchester United, Liverpool were two points clear at the top.

A Europa League quarter-final against Atalanta and a potential semi-final against Marseille or Benfica seemed kind on paper.

It meant a treble was on for Liverpool to mark Jurgen Klopp’s last season on Merseyside.

Fast forward 12 days, they are third in the Premier League, two points behind leaders Manchester City, after a draw at Old Trafford and a defeat by Crystal Palace, and out of Europe after a 3-1 aggregate defeat by Italian side Atalanta.

Liverpool have secured the Carabao Cup this season, but now can only add a second Premier League title for Klopp before the German waves goodbye on 19 May.

“It is weighing on them – I see a team that is playing under stress,” said former Liverpool midfielder Don Hutchison on TNT Sports.

“They are a team under pressure – they are trying to finish off the season because of Jurgen Klopp’s farewell.”

Between Klopp announcing his intended departure on 26 January and the recent slump, Liverpool won the Carabao Cup and had claimed 22 points from an available 27 in the Premier League, but had been knocked out of the FA Cup.

Former Reds striker Peter Crouch said: “It has been a difficult week for them. They’ll take the positives of winning away from home at a difficult place but it is slightly concerning at the moment.”

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