Roy Hodgson’s tenure at Anfield has hardly been a problem free experience so far this season. The club lie in 13th place in the league after four games, gaining only five points so far. It won’t get any easier for Liverpool, who face Manchester United in their next game.
Perhaps the biggest problem for Hodgson has been the form of Fernando Torres, or lack of it. Those looking at Premier league betting prices for top goal scorer note that the Spaniard didn’t have a great World Cup, aside from winning the thing. He failed to score in his country’s seven games and was hugely overshadowed by his strike partner David Villa. The 26 year old also suffered another injury in the final, resulting in Torres missing much of pre-season for his club.
Since returning to the first team, Torres has failed to play a full 90 minutes under Hodgson, scoring only once this season, in the 1-0 victory over West Brom. His performance in his side’s last match against Birmingham was branded “diabolical” by his usual number one fan Jamie Redknapp. The usually Liverpool leaning Redknapp was pretty spot on however in his assessment of toothless display put in by Torres. The Spaniard looked off the pace and frustrated during the goalless draw against the Blues, who were the better side throughout the 90 minutes.
For too long this team has relied on Torres and Steven Gerrard to win games by themselves. When the two key players don’t perform, this side looks very ordinary indeed. Even when Torres finds his form, which he is sure to do, Liverpool will already be too far off the football odds pace. Their search for a return to Champions League football could be a long one.