Aston Villa let grass grow longer than normal to slow down Liverpool, says Graeme Souness

A superb first-half hat-trick from Ollie Watkins helped Villa to a 7-2 victory, handing Jurgen Klopp’s side their first defeat of the season. It was the first time Liverpool conceded seven goals in a match in any competition since 1963.

“What I would say, Villa, and it’s the same for both teams, I think they’ve left the grass longer than normal to slow Liverpool’s movement,” Sky Sports pundit Souness said.

“All the top teams want short grass, a fast pitch. That doesn’t look like a fast pitch to me.”

Liverpool defender Virgil van Dijk told Sky Sports his team would review their performance but would not get too down on themselves.

“We have to be very hard with each other, and we will be. It’s key to not get crazy, but we have to be stepping it up.

“The performance level between the last game against Arsenal for the league and today was too big… Everyone has to take responsibility.”

Back-up goalkeeper Adrian made yet another poor error when he gifted Villa a goal on Sunday, and Klopp said Alisson Becker, who missed the game with a shoulder injury, faces up to six weeks out and would miss their next fixture against rivals Everton on 17 October.

“It could have been worse with that injury,” Klopp said. “I don’t want to put a timeframe on it, but four weeks could be possible – six weeks is maybe more likely.”



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