Liverpool would have headed into their weekend fixture against Arsenal knowing they had much to prove.
Having lost 2-1 to Manchester United prior to the international break, a defeat against the Gunners would have all but ended the Reds’ hopes of qualifying for next season’s Champions League.
But Brendan Rodgers’ side could not get the win they so desperately wanted, instead losing 4-1 to a dominant Arsenal team who ultimately helped Manchester United go eight points clear in the race for fourth spot.
With Martin Skrtel suspended for Saturday’s match after being found guilty of stamping on United’s David de Gea last month, Rodgers had a decision to make in the heart of his defence. And it was somewhat surprising that while summer signing Dejan Lovren started on the bench, Kolo Toure began the match.
The Ivory Coast international has put in some good performances this season, not least against Real Madrid, but Saturday’s game suggested his time at Anfield is coming to an end.
The 34-year-old was caught out time and again and his presence in Liverpool’s back-line caused more problems than it solved.
With his contract running out this summer, and following his latest performance, it would no surprise if Toure has been seen in a Liverpool shirt for the last time.
Rodgers may not have full faith in Lovren, but he is surely now a better option than Toure while they await Skrtel’s return.
And after that, one suspects Toure may call time on a glorious career that has faltered at the final furlong.