Sunday 17 December 2017

Ending nightmare will take a 'lot of work' admits Reds boss

Liverpool manager Roy Hodgson admits he has plenty of work to do to drag his side out of the mess they have created for themselves.

Their 2-1 home defeat to Premier League newcomers Blackpool showed just how bad things have got at Anfield.

The hosts were not in the game in the first 45 minutes, by which time they were 2-0 down after Glen Johnson fouled Luke Varney to allow Charlie Adam to score from the penalty spot before Varney grabbed the vital second himself with the Reds' defence vainly appealing for offside.

Sotirios Kyrgiakos' 53rd-minute header pulled one back and, after a sustained spell of attacking, the Greek could have snatched a draw in the dying seconds only to be brilliantly denied by goalkeeper Matt Gilks.

Blackpool were well worth their victory, a result which leaves Liverpool in 18th place with just six points from seven matches.

"There is a lot of work to do and a lot of things to sort out," said Hodgson, whose side have now not won in five matches in all competitions.

"The only thing I can take heart from is that the spirit from the team is still there because I couldn't have asked for any more in the second half. We were really anxious to get back on the right track with this result but we were unable to do it and no words will make the situation any better.

"It is pointless to try to be positive because we lost the game.

"Their great result is our nightmare result. It is a very bad day.

"At the moment things look bleak and really bad and it is difficult for me to put a bright face upon it."

Hodgson has been under scrutiny ever since he succeeded Rafael Benitez in the summer and his position was further undermined by the Kop chanting the name of Liverpool legend Kenny Dalglish, unceremoniously overlooked for a return to the manager's job.

"The fans are entitled to voice their frustrations, they are a frustrated group at the moment," said Hodgson.

"I am the one responsible because I am the team manager. When the team does badly then the criticism is going to fall my way and I have to accept it." To add to Liverpool's woes striker Fernando Torres was forced off with a groin injury after just 10 minutes. "I don't know how severe it is but it came as a surprise to us, we had no awareness there were any problems in the groin area," Hodgson added.

Liverpool's problems will undoubtedly take precedence over Blackpool's success but manager Ian Holloway certainly enjoyed himself as his side were applauded off by the home fans.

"It is one of the dreams I've had for years," he said. "This is not far off the home of football -- these supporters have seen some of the best football over the years and in my era as a player there was no better team in the world. The boys made me so proud and for supporters to clap us off, that is all I wanted. This is a fantastic moment for Blackpool."

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