What was Jurgen Klopp’s reaction to the game last night, where Liverpool started off their busy Christmas period by beating Stoke 4-1 at Anfield.
Having witnessed Chelsea comfortably win to go nine points clear there was only one solution – a win. However – as often the case, it was another game of mixed emotions. Liverpool went down to a Walters goal in the 13th minute, Liverpool fought back in style, in a game they could have won by much more than just 4-1.
Lallana’s wonder goal kick-started not only the atmosphere within the stadium by the tempo of the players.
- Jurgen Klopp named an unchanged side once again, selecting the team that beat Everton and Middlesbrough last week.
- Philippe Coutinho was among those still out with injury.
- Merseyside-born Walters nets Stoke’s opener.
- Lallana and Firmino claw back a goal each, meaning we went 2-1 up at half-time.
- Imbula’s own goal in 60th minute.
- Sturridge scores first league goal of the season, making it 4-1.
What did Klopp have to say?
“It was a very difficult game. The result doesn’t show it, but it was difficult because it was the third or fourth time we have played Stoke with Crouch on the pitch and that is a sign of how they want to play.”
“It is difficult to defend. Maybe we could do better when we had the ball but we did not have enough patience in our own possession and the long balls are really difficult to defend. When he is 45 maybe they will still bring him in.”
“We then scored a wonderful goal and then the second one. We regrouped again and told the players that the movement was not as good as it could be and we controlled the game.”
“It was pretty clear Stoke cannot play the same half again. It was intense for them, they pressed high and were aggressive. We did better with the ball and deserved this result.”
“The start of the game was really difficult because the plan of Stoke was to press really high, especially with the two strikers,” added Klopp.
“We were not patient enough in our passing game, we could have done more. It became a wild game and when they had the ball it was immediately in the air.”
“Peter Crouch did outstanding work, he was really difficult to defend, and Joe Allen was brilliant with the second balls in the beginning.”
“At 2-1 we could adjust at half-time, we spoke about a few things. We scored a wonderful third goal and then Daniel closed the game. That was really important.”
“Confidence is not a problem of the team at the moment. We know about our quality, but obviously we don’t show it all the time.”
Manchester City game in NY Eve
Klopp then spoke about the planning for the game against Man City on New Year’s Eve. City boss Pep Guardiola, whose side beat Hull 3-0 on Monday, was at Anfield to see the Reds’ emphatic victory.
“I respect them a lot, but I have not been to City’s stadium this season or last to watch games,” said Klopp.
“We are already looking forward. It’s a difficult game for both teams, but an exciting one. The best news for us is that it’s at Anfield.”
“They’re an outstanding side, we are not too bad. It’ll be a nice game.”
“Whatever I say tonight, we cannot win it tonight. But maybe I could say a few things that make it more difficult for us. It’s probably best I shut my mouth.”
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