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Are Liverpool in the title race?

Liverpool's season thus far has been nothing short of dramatic. Red cards, huge misses, and off-the-pitch atrocities. First of all, we must wish all the best to Luis Diaz in this torrid time.

After equalising against Luton on Saturday, the Colombian lifted his shirt to reveal an undershirt saying "Libertad para papa" (freedom for father). His goal was the talk of the town for the media and rightly so.

However, the equaliser was not enough to keep Jamie Carragher happy "I don't think Liverpool are in the title race. They need a proper six and a ball-playing centre-back." With Alexis Mac Allister's suspension, the Reds will enter their next Premier League game against Brentford without the Argentinian.

The former Brighton midfielder has split the fan base so far this season, due to the midfielder playing out of position. The 24-year-old has been playing as the six in this new-look midfield thus far this season. His progressive carries ( 2.32 per 90) have been fantastic this season and he has transformed how the Reds play. Moreover, Mac Allister's five bookings this season have demonstrated a lack of discipline and a chink in the armour in terms of his defensive abilities.

Following the Merseyside Reds' disappointing draw to Luton, questions have been asked about their ability to go for the title this season. A lack of defensive capability has led to fans questioning whether Jurgen Klopp's men can go all the way and challenge the likes of Arsenal, Spurs, and, Manchester City.

The Reds' start to the season showed no signs of the team taking time to adapt. However, Saturday's draw looked like a team that had not played together before. Luton nullified Liverpool's attack and the midfield did not have the hold on the game they usually do.

Jurgen Klopp was understandably disappointed in his side's performance as their weaknesses from last season are starting to surface. Jurgen Klopp's men dominated possession as usual but lacked that cutting edge up top and couldn't find the defence-splitting balls in midfield.

This was proven in the stats as the Hatters won 58.1% of their duels, whereas the Reds only won 41.9% of theirs. Luton seemed to want it more and would've been deserving winners, if it wasn't for Luis Diaz's last-gasp equaliser.

Last night's 3-2 loss against Toulouse has also indicated clear problems in the Merseyside Reds team. The Violets were far more aggressive with 63% of their ground duels won, whereas Liverpool only won 37% of their ground duels.

Jurgen Klopp was understandably frustrated with his team's performance. "It was well deserved to lose because they won pretty much all the decisive battles. We had too many situations where we should have won the ball but we didn't."

As mentioned before, the lack of ground duels won by the Reds was unheard of, a Jurgen Klopp side usually prides themselves on their intensity but there seemed to be a clear lack of that against Toulouse.

If the Merseyside Reds are to challenge for the title, they must get that intensity back, a new-look midfield has the ability and legs to provide that intensity to get back to winning ways. Jamie Carragher's comments, whilst including some validity, seem harsh on Jurgen Klopp's men.

Liverpool are still in the race for the title and only sit three points behind the leaders: Manchester City. With players such as Thiago, Stefan Bajčetić, Ryan Gravenberch, Curtis Jones and Andy Robertson all set to return after the international break. The Reds have a squad capable of challenging for the title.


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