Liverpool lost 2-0 in the FA Cup to Chelsea with Jurgen Klopp’s Premier League leaders struggling at Stamford Bridge.
Danny Murphy has hailed Curtis Jones’s ‘exceptional’ performance in Liverpool’s FA Cup defeat against Chelsea though the former midfielder was left confused about the positioning of Divock Origi and Takumi Minamino, speaking to talkSPORT (4 March, 9.30am).
The Premier League title might be all-but wrapped up already despite that stunning reverse at Watford on Saturday, but there will be no domestic double at Anfield this season.
Jurgen Klopp’s winning machine has malfunctioned of late with a 2-0 defeat at Stamford Bridge in the FA Cup fifth round their third loss in the space of just four games. And, in truth, a ferocious Chelsea side were more than worthy of their victory with one-time Everton star Ross Barkley tearing his old Merseyside neighbours apart in West London.
And former Liverpool hero Murphy was left ‘bemused’ by Klopp’s decision to play Origi and Minamino in ill-fitting roles – though another eye-catching display from a homegrown teenager gave him reason for optimism.
“The performance of Curtis Jones was really good, he was exceptional at times in the second half,” Murphy said.
“I was a bit bemused by Origi’s and Minamino’s positions. (Origi) is better when he is through the middle and Minamino is more of a wide player.”
Origi may be Liverpool’s man for the big occasion but there is no doubt that he represents a substantial drop-off in quality from the likes of Mo Salah and Roberto Firmino and he did very little at Stamford Bridge to suggest that he deserves more than a benchwarming role in Klopp’s plans.
Minamino, meanwhile, is still a newcomer to English football and it will take time for him to adapt to the fizzing pace of the British game.