FanView: Philippe Coutinho's Absence Is No Excuse for Liverpool to Drop Points Against Huddersfield

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As Liverpool have been given the news that Philippe Coutinho will miss his side's home fixture against Huddersfield Town, many Liverpool fans are thinking 'here we go again'. The Reds have had a fairly inconsistent start to the season yet again, sitting in ninth place with three wins, four draws and two defeats. 

Jurgen Klopp failed to land a number of key targets, missing out on Virgil Van Dijk, Naby Keita and Thomas Lemar. The introduction of Mohamed Salah has proved a big hit, with the Egyptian topping the Reds' scoring charts and putting in a handful of influential performances. 


But one main issue still hangs over Anfield, the defence. Last weekend's battering at the hands of Spurs highlighted yet again the sheer size of Liverpool's defensive issues, which led to Dejan Lovren being brought off after half an hour. A 4-1 defeat to one of your rivals is always hard to take, but this season Klopp has suffered two of his heaviest defeats since his arrival just over two years ago (4-1 v Spurs; 5-0 v Man City). 

So ahead of this weekend's tie against a rejuvenated Huddersfield side, it remains to be seen whether Klopp will give his failing centre-backs a boost of confidence by sticking by them, or rotating his men to leave Lovren out. 

Liverpool's defensive problems have been a constant issue, an ever-present, some to complain about it has almost become boring. The news that Philippe Coutinho missing this weekend's game is new, and just another piece of bad news to add to the pile that sits on the Anfield pitch of late. With Mane and Coutinho out, Klopp is missing two of his best attacking players, meaning he will have to adopt a different system against David Wagner's side. 


But although the Reds are without their two key men, it should be no excuse to drop points. Huddersfield sit two places behind Liverpool and can leapfrog them with a win at Anfield. Say that to a Liverpool fan and watch them fume. Tell them that Coutinho is out, and watch them sigh. The thinking now is that Coutinho is out; Mane is out and our defence is currently performing worse than a Sunday league side - what could possibly go wrong? 

Well, despite the injury worries, Liverpool still have Salah, Roberto Firmino and Daniel Sturridge as attacking options. If Klopp wanted to keep the same system, he could play it with those three up front to great effect. Yes, Sturridge is a walking sick note and yes, Firmino hasn't scored a league goal for over a month. But get these players fired up and they have the quality to overcome Wagner's side. 


Huddersfield will be no slouches. They overturned Manchester United last weekend and have proved their qualities in multiple games this year. But when it comes down to it, Liverpool are at Anfield, playing in front of the Kop, trying to kickstart their campaign. 

A missing Coutinho doesn't mean failure, it means a chance - a chance for fringe players to come in and make an impact. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Dom Solanke, even Danny Ings who has impressed for the Under-23s recently. 

Coutinho will be a big miss, but Liverpool have the quality to overcome Huddersfield despite a number of key injuries.