Could the World Cup explain Liverpool's terrible season so far?

Fifa World Cup Brazil

The Reds may have been shot in the foot before the campaign had even begun...

Liverpool's struggles need no further documenting but the Anfield faithful will never stop looking for its causes.

And identifying the cause of a problem is always the first step towards solving it.

Unfortunately for the Reds, of course, several factors have played their part in a woeful campaign so far: poor planning, terrible recruitment, ineffective training... one need not go further to understand the severity of Liverpool's plight.

But has one underlying cause been forgotten by most observers?

Indeed, boss Brendan Rodgers believes Liverpool's biggest problem is confidence-based and psychological. And it certainly appears that the Northern Irishman is right - at least on that count.

As well as the Reds' Premier League title disappointment, however, could the World Cup be to blame for their psychological scars?

After all, a large group of Liverpool's team went straight from losing out on first spot domestically to international misery with England. That group formed the core of Rodgers' side in Steven Gerrard, Jordan Henderson, Raheem Sterling, Glen Johnson, Daniel Sturridge (and also summer signing Adam Lallana).

While it was hoped that disappointment could have aided the players in terms of coping with defeat together, it seems to have ensured the crisis of confidence they would have been suffering already was simply made to last even longer. Now, the Reds are still suffering from a double hangover as a result...

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