Liverpool‘s dismal start to the 2022-23 Premier League season continued with Sunday’s 3-2 defeat at Arsenal that left them wallowing 10th in the table.
Jurgen Klopp’s side have amassed just 10 points so far this term after losing two and drawing four of their opening eight league fixtures.
The Reds ran up totals of more than 90 points in three of the previous four seasons, including 99 when they won the title in 2019-20, so to see them struggling to tread water in mid-table beneath two of the three newly promoted teams has come as something of a shock.
Here are 10 facts and stats that help illustrate how underwhelming Liverpool have been so far this season.
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1. Way off the pace
The 3-2 victory for Arsenal meant they returned to the top of the Premier League above Manchester City, while vanquished Liverpool slid down into 10th place, a whopping 14 points behind the leaders. This comes after Klopp’s side finished 23 points above the Gunners in last season’s standings.
2. Dropping points galore
Liverpool have dropped points in six of their first eight league fixtures of the 2022-23 campaign. In total, the Reds have already seen 14 points go begging this season.
By way of comparison, it took until their 19th game of last season to drop as many points and they only dropped 12 points altogether in their title-winning season of 2019-20.
3. Worst start for a decade
Liverpool have registered their worst start to a league campaign for a decade, since 2012-13 when they accrued a measly nine points from their opening eight games under Brendan Rodgers in his maiden season in charge at Anfield. The team went on to finish seventh in the table, 28 points behind champions Manchester United.
However, it isn’t the Reds’ worst-ever start to a Premier League season; that came in 2010-11 under Roy Hodgson, when his side earned a lowly six points from their first eight fixtures.
Julien Laurens reacts to Arsenal’s 3-2 win vs. Liverpool.
4. Playing catch-up
Thanks largely to a newly acquired knack for conceding early goals, Liverpool have already spent more time behind in games this season (251 minutes) than they did in the whole of last season (236 minutes).
5. Slow starts
Liverpool have found themselves trailing at half-time on six occasions already this season having only been behind once at the break last term — at Manchester City in April. The Reds were 2-1 down at half-time at the Etihad only for Sadio Mane to equalise in the first minute of the second half, and the game ended 2-2.
What’s more, according to Opta, the Reds have been so slow to start this campaign that if all 2022-23 Premier League games had ended at half-time, they would be rock bottom of the league with just four points to their name (W1 D1 L6).
6. Troubles on their travels
Defeat against Arsenal at the Emirates was Liverpool’s fourth consecutive away trip without a victory in the Premier League, which represents their longest streak since October to December 2020 when they muddled through five straight away games without winning any of them.
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7. The Bournemouth curse
Jurgen Klopp must be ruing the day his side ran riot to register an emphatic 9-0 victory over Bournemouth on Aug. 27. Since that fateful day, which led to Scott Parker being fired as manager, the Cherries are unbeaten in the Premier League and have collected nine points from five games under interim boss Gary O’Neil. Only Manchester City (13), Arsenal (12) and Tottenham (10) have won more points in that time.
On the other hand, Liverpool have picked up just five points since, and as such are now even two points beneath Bournemouth in the table (though the Cherries have played one game more.)
8. Precarious goal difference
One of the quirks of the Premier League table as it stands is that Liverpool in 10th are below three teams with a negative goal difference: Manchester United (5th place, -2), Bournemouth (8th, -12) and Fulham (9th, -4).
But without that 9-0 drubbing of the Cherries in late August to skew their +/- column, the Reds would also have a negative goal difference themselves (-1).
9. Salah losing golden touch
Mohamed Salah — who shared last season’s Premier League golden boot with Tottenham’s Son Heung-Min after scoring 23 goals — looked to have started the season in buoyant fashion with a goal and an assist in the 3-1 win over Manchester City in the Community Shield. However, the Egyptian’s scoring output has since been underwhelming with just two league goals in his first eight league appearances, with none at all in his last five games.
Indeed, Salah’s last Premier League goal came in a 2-1 defeat against Manchester United at Old Trafford on Aug. 22. Since then he’s failed to notch against Bournemouth, Newcastle, Everton, Brighton and Arsenal.
Meanwhile, former teammate Mane has already scored four goals in nine Bundesliga outings for Bayern Munich, and seven in 14 games overall. Just saying.
10. Paying the penalty
Bukayo Saka struck the crucial blow for Arsenal on Sunday when the 21-year-old forward converted the winning goal from the penalty spot in the 76th minute.
While the finish was confident and assured, the numbers were certainly also on Saka’s side when he stepped up to the spot as Liverpool goalkeeper Alisson‘s record against penalties is enough to give most takers a timely fillip.
The Brazil international has saved only one of the 12 penalty kicks he’s faced during his career to date, with seven (including Saka’s) being scored and four being missed.
Information from ESPN’s Stats and Information Group was used in this report