Fuming Jamie Carragher slams Liverpool for ‘suicide football’ and slaughters three stars for playing like kids in Napoli thrashing

Virgil van Dijk (of Liverpool and Napoli's Victor Osimhen battle for the ball during the UEFA Champions League Group A match at the Diego Armando Maradona Stadium in Naples

Jamie Carragher has furiously criticised Liverpool over their ‘”suicide football” in losing 4-1 at Napoli in the Champions League and has also hit out at the club’s transfer activity this summer.

The Reds, 2022 Champions League finalists, look a pale shadow of last season’s side after badly coming off second best at the Diego Maradona Stadium. Indeed, they found themselves 3-0 down at half-time in one of the worst halves witnessed under Jurgen Klopp. That quickly became 4-0 after the break and Luis Diaz’s strike counted for very little.

Indeed, that scoreline could even have been worse but for an Alisson penalty save and a goalline clearance from Virgil van Dijk. After the game, a shell-shocked Klopp pulled no punches with his players. He fears he may have to ‘reinvent the team’ and also claims Saturday’s opponents Wolves will be laughing.

And following an underwhelming start to their Premier League campaign witb just two wins in six games, the pressure is really on for Klopp.

As such, Carragher has expressed his concerns that there are deep-running problems at Liverpool.

“The problem tonight is not that game. Forget this game,” he told CBS after the match.

“For me the big worry is that, ‘is this almost something that’s going to carry on through the season? Is this an end of a cycle?

“Liverpool massively got the transfer ideas in the summer wrong because this team is so far off and it has been at full pelt for five or six years.

“Is this a massive drop off physically because of what’s happened over the last five or six years the way they’ve played, how intensive they’ve been. And can this team get it back?”

Jamie Carragher hits out at Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez performances

Having spent a club-record fee on Darwin Nunez, the Reds waited until the last-possible moment to fix their midfield. That saw Arthur Melo arrive on a season’s loan from Juventus. However, the signing is seen by Carragher as something of a panic buy. And he believes it’s an issue that should have been addressed earlier.

With injuries biting, Thiago Alcantara, Jordan Henderson, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Naby Keita were all missing in Naples. That saw Fabinho, Havey Elliott and veteran James Milner lining up in midfield.

They struggled badly though, leaving Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez exposed time and again.

Carragher has also lambasted the performance of the central defensive duo and did not mince his words.

“It’s embarrassing. It really is,” Carragher said of Liverpool’s defending.

“I said before it’s kid stuff and this is the big problem with Liverpool right now. They’ve built their success on intensity on the ball, which means the opposition can’t get the head up to put the ball over.

“So your team’s always tight. Always really compact .At times [there’s a] risk, but you get an energy on the ball, that energy is not there now, so that back four has to adapt and it has to go back three or four yards.

“That’s all we’re talking about. But if they keep playing [like that] they’re gonna have a big problem in terms of the Premier League this season and qualifying for the next round of the Champions League, because that is suicide football.”

Alexander-Arnold display also slammed

Trent Alexander-Arnold also endured a poor night, with Carragher lamenting his defending for Napoli’s third and fourth goals.

The England star was also caught out during the Champions League final, allowing Vinicius Junior to score Real Madrid’s winner.

Carragher believes he will keep getting exposed as he’s not a conventional full-back.

“The thing with Trent is I’ve always said this that he’s not a conventional fullback. He’s not great defensively. He never will be,’ Carragher said.

“But he’s got strengths and talents that we don’t normally see from a fullback. He’s Liverpool’s playmaker, but I’ve always said I thought [these defensive struggles] would come with another manager.

“When Liverpool stopped being one of the top teams in the Premier League or Europe. That means they will defend more, they will have more nights like this. And his defensive deficiencies will stand out more and we’ll see less of him on the ball.

“That might be a time where he has to go into midfield. When you’re in a Jurgen Klopp team, you normally dominate the ball, dominate the play.

“But when you see him under real pressure, his defensive problems will stand out even more and that’s the big problem for him right now. I thought that might come with the next manager but the problem is it’s coming right now with Liverpool.”

Liverpool face Ajax and then Rangers at Anfield in their next two Champions League matches. They will need to make a serious improvement if they are to get through their group.

Next up, though, is Wolves and Klopp will be hoping for a vast improvement from his players.

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