‘Hard to accept’: Javi Gracia shocked by Leeds’ collapse against Liverpool


As Jürgen Klopp hailed his Liverpool players for their “best performance of the season”, Javi Gracia said he did not have an explanation for the defensive collapse that has seen Leeds concede 11 goals in two games.

The interim Leeds manager looked shocked after watching his team lose 6-1 to Liverpool. “It’s hard to manage,” said Gracia, eight days after seeing relegation-threatened Leeds surrender 5-1 to Crystal Palace at home. “I don’t remember ever conceding so many goals in two games in my entire career but I am here to give my best to try and help the team and the club. At this moment I don’t have an explanation for what’s happened. We’re losing composure. It’s hard to accept.

“Liverpool are a very good team but what we are seeing at the moment is not enough. We have to improve our levels. It’s difficult but we have to stick together and be demanding with ourselves. We have seven games left and we have to give our best face. After conceding six goals I have to be critical with myself and provide solutions for the future.”

He refused to be drawn about eighth-placed Liverpool’s outside chances of Europa League, or perhaps even Champions League, qualification. “We just have to do what we did tonight again and again,” he said. “There are so many teams ahead of us and they might keep winning their games but I just want to play good football and see where we end up.

“But all the games are super-important for us now. I don’t know where they will lead to but where they might lead to is super-important. I would like to see us playing with the same desire and passion that we did tonight.”