Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp insists their current problems are being over-exaggerated and he already has a plan of action to turn around a frustrating week.
Having been held to a 1-1 draw by Burnley last week, the Reds boss saw a much-changed side crash out of the Carabao Cup on Tuesday against Leicester – whom they face again in the Premier League this weekend.
Liverpool have conceded the first goal in their last four matches, resulting in two draws and two defeats, and that has been compounded by an inability to convert a significant number of chances in all those games.
Defensive concerns have increased with Dejan Lovren unable to train this week due to a bad back and fellow central defender Joel Matip struggling with a knock from the weekend, highlighting how the failure to strengthen the centre of defence after their failed pursuit of Southampton’s Virgil van Dijk could come back to haunt Liverpool.
But Klopp believes the situation is not as bad as is being portrayed.
“It sounds like we have no points and are completely the worst team in the league,” he said.
“Yes we have problems, that is why we ‘only’ have eight points and not 15. We can make it more serious than it is or we can take it like it is.
“I understand 100 per cent (why) we sit here and talk about the things that have happened.
“I know already about all these problems – or ‘not problems’ – and I’ve made my decision already how to work with it but if I talk a lot about it I only create headlines ‘Klopp says this. Klopp says that’ and it doesn’t help us.
“We have work to do but that would be the same if we had 15 points, only it would feel different but it would be the same.
“We conceded first goal against Seville and responded really well, we conceded the first goal against Burnley and responded really well.
“I would prefer not to concede the first goal to be honest.
“This is the long part of a three-game week from Tuesday to Saturday so we have one more session. We can use it but we have to prove it on Saturday.”
After their struggles to get games they have dominated over the line, questions have been asked about whether Klopp has the right sort of characters in his squad.
There are no longer the likes of Steven Gerrard and Jamie Carragher present to rally the players on the field and while the Reds boss is happy with what he has at his disposal, he sees no reason why it is not an area they can work on.
“Yes we have the right characters. Yes sometimes we react really well, sometimes we don’t react perfectly,” he added.
“That is how it always is and we can improve on each part of our game. Character is nothing fixed.
“Someone says you cannot improve on this, you cannot change your mentality but of course you can. You only have to get used to it.
“If we take the right information from the things we have done so far then it always helps and that is what I try to help the players with.
“As long as we stay in the game, as long as we do what we good at we are a threat for each team.
“Only in the moment when we change these things then it becomes a problem.”
Published at Thu, 21 Sep 2017 13:24:01 +0000