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 By Steven Kelly

Liverpool win was excellent, but reinforcements like Lemar still needed

Liverpool's excellent 4-0 win on Sunday seemed to draw more attention to Arsenal's shortcomings than to the home side's qualities. But a six, or even seven, goal gap would not have flattered Liverpool such was the irresistible flow of their attacking power.

It's only three league games in but already there is an air of contentment among Reds fans right now, but with a week left in the transfer window that mood could alter.

Given the fierce pace and passion of Jurgen Klopp's style, performances like the one against Arsenal are always likely at the beginning of the season. The Londoners just happened to draw the short straw by facing them so early.

It will be in the dark, cold winter months to come where Liverpool must show their true mettle, and for that there needs to be additions to the current squad.

The international break may feel like it has come at the wrong time, with Liverpool just a few nervous seconds at Watford away from five straight victories. However, it may offer some breathing space; time for reflection from the hierarchy about what kind of football club they want to run.

Energy levels may be high so far, but will that be the case by the end of October? Squad strength isn't just for resting your stars either, it's for providing competition to the player who starts feeling comfortable and thinking he cannot be dropped.

Klopp can be pleased so far with the contributions of minor players in his squad. Joe Gomez and Andrew Robertson have performed well as understudies, but this will be a long season and there feels like a need for more quality from outside.

Fans are genuinely excited about the football they've seen so far. The one expensive addition -- Mohammed Salah from Roma -- has been a revelation. Concerns are really about the long haul and whether they've enough in reserve. Klopp has claimed several times the club is looking for new players but he'd be happy with his squad if changed before the transfer window closes this week.

It would be nice to share his optimism. The club's injury record under Klopp has never been good and naturally there are fears Adam Lallana won't be the last star to break down. His role, as an ordinary midfielder or even an attacking one, seems well covered at present but the odds on it remaining so can be considered slim.

The club's owners need to grab this chance, especially if they relented and allowed Philippe Coutinho to join Barcelona. There have been reports that Klopp fears an unsettled presence in his tight-knit buoyant squad could adversely affect an optimistic mood he's worked so hard to build, so the Brazilian may yet be allowed to depart for around £150m.

If Coutinho were to leave this week, Klopp could be given the money to recruit new players who really want to play for Liverpool. At this late stage, though, just getting a stronger squad for the season should be the priority.

Some have watched the football Liverpool play and tried to imagine Coutinho supplying the three forwards with yet more chances. It's a mouth-watering prospect, but a change in the player's attitude would be needed in order for that to work.

The club's dilemma is obvious; who can be bought this late in the window that genuinely improves the squad? Will clubs like Monaco relent and release their stars if enough money was thrown at their obstinacy?

If the reported £60m bid for Thomas Lemar was successful it would make Liverpool's attacking options truly frightening, perhaps negating the need to strengthen elsewhere or force Coutinho to stay.

But the nightmare scenario is one even the best businessman couldn't sell: Coutinho leaves, no further additions. What would be their "pitch" then?

There's no Virgil van Dijk -- "Southampton wouldn't budge;" there's no Naby Keita -- "Leipzig wouldn't budge;" Barcelona want Coutinho -- "hey, what can you do?" Good luck selling that one.

Liverpool are playing well right now. Obviously it is early days but there's a chance they could find themselves in the chasing pack for the title. They were at the beginning of 2017, too.

A lack of squad depth and a reluctance to even address the issue casually tossed that title challenge aside. If it was to happen again, it's hard to see how the owners could be forgiven for squandering a gilt-edged opportunity two years in a row.

Some claim Liverpool aren't one of the biggest clubs any more. Now would be a good time to prove that is way off the mark.

Steven Kelly is one of ESPN FC's Liverpool bloggers. Follow him on Twitter @SteKelly198586.


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