Steven Gerrard has warned Liverpool's recent poor form may get worse before it gets better following their shock FA Cup fourth round exit to Wolverhampton Wanderers.
The former midfielder, who recently re-joined the Merseyside club in a coaching role, saw goals from Richard Stearman and Andreas Wiemann consign Liverpool to a third home defeat this week.
“The players need to regroup and regroup quickly because they’ve got major problems on the counter-attack and they’re about to play the best counter-attacking team in the Premier League,” he told BT Sport
“It’s crash helmet time for the players. They’ve got to react and they’ve got the react quickly. They need a massive, huge performance against Chelsea in a few days.”
Before Liverpool’s defeat, Gerrard suggested that their recent struggles are largely attributable to the absence of Sadio Mane, who is currently on international duty with Senegal at the Africa Cup of Nations.
Mane has impressed since arriving as a £34million signing from Southampton last summer, but has been unavailable for selection in each of Liverpool’s last seven games.
“It’s clear for everyone to see, he’s a top player and we’ve missed him so much. He comes with that pace, that unpredictability,” Gerrard said.
“As Paul [Lambert, the Wolves manager] said to stretch teams you need to run in behind and he does it for 90 minutes.
“What he does to the opposition is two or three players have to worry about him, which leaves gaps all over the pitch for other players.”
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