The poor form of Liverpool continues, losing a fourth consecutive match despite taking the lead early through Rickie Lambert. That advantage was overturned as Crystal Palace swept the pitch en route to a 3-1 win with goals from Dwight Gayle, Joe Ledley and Mile Jedinak.
Rickie Lambert took control of an excellent through ball from Adam Lallana and scored in the second minute, but after missing too many opportunities during their dominant period early in the match and also later on, with Raheem Sterling and Philippe Coutinho finding themselves open in the box but providing inaccurate passes time after time, they were punished, just like six months ago.
Crystal Palace took advantage of Brendan Rodgers refusing to give up on his struggling formation, failing to deliver time after time. Poor defending from Martin Skrtel allowed Dwight Gayle to score off a rebound in the 16th minute, and change the match completely.
In the 78th minute a defensive breakdown (not the first, not the last) allowed Joe Ledley to be left completely alone inside the penalty box and score a deserved winner for Crystal Palace. A minute later Raheem Sterling was fouled inside the penalty box, but Jonathan Moss, not for the first time, helped out the home side.
While Liverpool were attacking with no thought or organization, Crystal Palace struck again, this time with a free kick, scoring in the 80th minute through Jedinak. That was the last straw, with Rodgers from the sidelines realizing his team isn’t just in a slump, but going through a serious crisis.
No longer thinking about the top 4, Liverpool at the moment are closer to relegation than anything else. The quality of players suggests they should be doing better, but a combination of subpar performances, bad management and coaching and a very low breaking point and mental fortitude are leading them into their crucial Champions League match lacking any sort of optimism.