JURGEN KLOPP is ‘leading a charmed life’ at Liverpool, according to former Reds midfielder Ronnie Whelan.
The German coach saw his side blow a chance to strengthen their grip on third place on Sunday as they were held to a scoreless draw at home to Southampton, meaning they could be overtaken by Manchester City, who have a game in hand.
And Whelan, who won six league titles, three FA Cups and the European Cup during his time at Liverpool, believes that Klopp has been lucky that other clubs have slipped up or focused their attentions elsewhere.
“The [Manchester] United squad has many players who are not at the required standard and I’m red in the face pointing out the same weakness at Anfield,” Whelan wrote in his column for the Herald.
“West Ham won’t be easy. But we want it and we will fight until the final whistle.”
— Liverpool FC (@LFC) May 9, 2017
“My fear that we would have to watch Liverpool through our fingers for the rest of the season has proven unfortunately accurate and more points were shed with a whimper [on Sunday].
“The game against Southampton was awful. The basic standard was unacceptable and Liverpool are now relying on circumstances and (Jose) Mourinho’s relentless pursuit of the Europa League to get them over the line.
“Klopp is leading a charmed life and every time his team makes a mistake, rival clubs do the same but he cannot longer rely on Manchester City to do that any more and Spurs will be focusing very firmly on staying second now that they seem to have blown the title chase.
“Realistically, we are talking about fourth place for Klopp and his players and if Mourinho had focused on the Premier League instead of the Europa League, I think Liverpool would be in big trouble by now and probably behind United in the table.”
Liverpool return to action on Sunday, May 14 when they take on West Ham at the London Stadium before bringing the curtain down on their campaign at home to Middlesbrough on May 21.