Souness blames 'slow' Varane for Liverpool's opener against  United

Graeme Souness blames ‘very slow’ Raphael Varane for Liverpool’s opener against Man United, while also criticises Fred for ‘getting it wrong’ after Cody Gakpo gave Reds the lead at Anfield

Graeme Souness was critical of Manchester United pair Raphael Varane and Fred after Cody Gakpo put Liverpool 1-0 up at Anfield on Sunday.

The Dutchman finished coolly past David de Gea after an excellent run and pass from Andy Robertson, but Souness felt the goal should have been avoided.   

‘Fred gets it wrong,’ he told Sky Sports. ‘He doesn’t need to take those steps to his right, an then he ends up slipping. 

‘Varane is very slow, he can’t get his feet in the right place. You have to give Andy Robinson great credit, but then when the shot comes in [Lisnadro] Martinez cuts across De Gea’s sightlines, he can’t even make an effort to try and save it.

Liverpool extended their lead to 5-0 after the break thanks to two goals from Darwin Nunez, one from Mohamed Salah plus another from Gakpo.

Both Gakpo and Nunez have been criticised at times after arriving in a struggling side this season, but they appear to be winning over the Kop faithful and resurrecting the Reds’ league campaign. 

The result will come as something of a shock for United fans, after an excellent few weeks for Erik ten Hag’s side that have seen them win the League Cup and mount a challenge for the title.

Baring a miraculous recovery, United look set to remain eight points off second-place Manchester City, although they are still fighting in the FA Cup and Europa League.

Liverpool will move within four points of fourth place Tottenham with a game in hand if they hold on to the three points, and could still be on track for a Champions League place despite a less-than ideal start to the season.

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