Sam Allardyce’s West Brom tried – often successfully – to split Liverpool center-backs at every opportunity and move Nat Phillips or Rhys Williams out of position.
Against Burnley and Crystal Palace, it won’t be Hal Robson-Kanu who races behind and tries to win the air battles, but Chris Wood and Christian Benteke, so Liverpool and Jurgen Klopp will have to have a plan.
West Brom has caused Williams and Phillips more trouble than most of them recently, despite their limitations, part of which may have been due to Fabinho occupying a higher position on the pitch, especially in the second half , as Liverpool pushed for the winner.
Against Burnley and Crystal Palace, however, he might need to be a bit more reserved, leaving the attack to those who used to be further ahead, in order to help protect the pair behind him.
“There is very little Liverpool can do as a team for their last two rotating games with Diogo Jota and Ozan Kabak,” Ian Doyle said on the Blood Red podcast.
“The midfield is the only place you can rotate, but it depends on what you want to do, and on the defensive it will be the same again.
You’ll receive the latest Blood Red written articles, plus the best Liverpool FC podcasts and videos featuring our journalists twice a week, all straight to your inbox for FREE!
Register here – it only takes a few seconds!
“The only way to change the defense is if one of the center-backs gets injured and Fabinho plays there.
“What could happen is that we could ask Fabinho to take a few steps back and help Rhys Williams and Nat Phillips in terms of the air threat.
“It will be more of a change of position and tactics than a real change of personnel.
Listen to the latest Blood Red podcast by clicking HERE
“They already played 4-4-2 there when Naby Keita had a very good game, they won 3-1 and Joe Gomez broke his leg playing right-back.
“It was a game in the middle of the week where they made changes and ideally Klopp would have wanted to make the change again, but there is only one game left and there are five days left before Crystal Palace. “
With a long injury list that has lasted all season, even in a campaign strewn with frustration on that front, Liverpool have little room for changes.
Must-see news from Liverpool FC
But they know they can barely afford to be tied in downtime like they were on Sunday until the incredible heroism of Alisson Becker.
Something will have to change for them to get a better result against two equally delicate opponents, and a slight change in position for Fabinho could be crucial.
Even so, Burnley and Crystal Palace will pose a threat and Liverpool will have to rely on their forwards to be more clinical than they have often been in recent times.
The payoff, however – a place in next season’s Champions League tournament – should be more than enough of an incentive.