Jurgen Klopp has said the demand and expectation for perfection cannot always be met, as simply being human ensures it is not guaranteed despite all the best intentions.
Liverpool’s season to date has been nowhere near perfect, with seven league defeats a far cry from the gold standard set in the two campaigns prior.
Klopp’s men had long been one of the standard-bearers and now face growing scrutiny after a poor run of form as both individuals and as a collective.
In an interview with DAZN Brasil, the boss was posed the question of if Trent Alexander-Arnold‘s form is indicative of the challenges and demands facing players in the current climate.
The right-back has had to recover from injury and COVID-19 and has been heavily relied upon due to the absence of other players, playing 29 games with a return of one goal and five assists.
The 22-year-old has not hit the dizzying heights of previous years and Klopp used the time to explain the difficulty of being your own worst enemy and how perfection does not come easy, despite insistent demands for just that.
“It’s just difficult, the season he played before was very difficult to play for such a young boy,” Klopp said.
“The only problem we have in the world is, not only football, that we expect always the best and always perfection.
“If somebody is not delivering then it’s like ‘why is that, why is that happening?’
“But sometimes it’s just not possible because we are human beings and we are always, not only Trent or myself, our biggest enemy.
“We have to fight ourselves a lot of the time and if the circumstances are not perfect it is difficult to play a perfect season.
“If you want to win the league you must play a perfect season, as perfect as possible. This year maybe you must not play a perfect season because even if City win then it was for sure not a perfect season for them.
“But you have to be close to perfection and that’s really tricky.”
The cards the Reds have been dealt in 2020/21 has ensured replicating their feats of the previous season were always going to be an uphill battle and as the boss alluded to, no one will be feeling it more than his side.