Liverpool chairman Tom Werner has listed the lack of a crowd at Anfield as one of the big reasons why this season has been a nightmare.
The Reds won the Premier League title last year for the first time in their history – and in style.
With Jurgen Klopp at the helm, they trounced the competition but have failed to replicate that form this campaign.
In fact, they find themselves struggling to even make it into the top four after a disastrous stretch of form.
That includes a six-match losing streak at Anfield – a feat that has never happened before in the club’s history.
And club chairman Werner believes such a run would never have happened had there been fans allowed in.
He told the Athletic: “I think that, I don’t want to make excuses, but I do think this pandemic has affected Liverpool and the Red Sox in the way that these are very loyal and supportive fan bases.
“People used to think that it would be very difficult to win a football match an Anfield, because it’s a fortress.
“And this year we’ve seen a number of matches that Liverpool has not played up to its capability, and I think a lot of that is the absence of our loyal supporters.
“So, I think the pandemic has perhaps affected us a little bit more, but I also don’t want to make excuses.”
Werner also insisted there were two more reasons, including the number of injuries and the fact that repeating a season of such success if often harder than the first.
He added: “It is extremely hard to be a repeat champion, no matter what the sport.
“You climb Mount Everest and you get to the top, and then somebody says ‘you have to do it again.’ And so it’s challenging under the best of circumstances.
“When the Everton goalkeeper took out Virgil van Dijk for the season, that was a blow because he was not only such a critical part of our defense, but a leader.
“But you know, I’ve been doing sports for 20 years, and I’ve seen a lot of, it’s very difficult when you have multiple injuries to constitute your team.”