Liverpool were absolutely sublime as they thrashed West Ham 4-0 at the London Stadium on Sunday. The result now puts them one win away from securing that coveted top four finish.
Victory against Middlesbrough at Anfield in the last game of the season next Sunday will secure 4th place.
For now Klopp was happy to reflect on a job well done by his side. “It was hard work,” he remarked. “There were a few moments where the game could have changed, but I thought we were really deserved winners. We played a really good football game.”
There was an immediate change in game plan switching to a diamond shape due to Firmino’s absence.
“The start was not that good, we changed system and obviously the one thing that is then new is the situation on the wing. The big chance they had in the second post area – we did not that good in this moment.”
There were chances for both sides in the opening moments, but as both teams settled it was Liverpool’s Brazilian magician who pulled all the strings. Really benefiting from a change in position allowing him to orchestrate the tempo from a deeper role.
Daniel Sturridge who started the game really did not dissappoint. Having not scored a Premier League goal since 2nd January, he comfortably slotted home Liverpool’s first like he’d been scoring week in week out all season – form is temporary, class is permanent.
On the half-hour mark, a sublime pass from Coutinho opened up the Hammers defence and picked out an unmarked Sturridge who went around goalkeeper Adrian before slotting home.
Sturridge always looks more effective when playing in a front two, reminiscent to days of playing alongside Suarez.
Today when he was up against 3 large centre-backs he wasn’t afraid to go wide behind the wing-backs exploiting the gaps left, whilst Origi lead the press with Lallana supporting.
Klopp goes on to say; “But they couldn’t score and we controlled the game and then we scored the goal. We were the dominant side.”
“Then they had one of the biggest chances I ever saw in my life! They didn’t scored and that was a lucky moment for us. The start of the second half was brilliant. We played really good football then and we were really direct.”
Having witnessed Arsenal closing in on a Top four finish, the pressure firmly on. Unlike against Southampton last week, Liverpool produced one of their most commanding performances of the season in a wholly one-sided affair.
And after the break it was the Brazilian who once again turned up the heat. Coutinho then scored two of his own, Wijnaldum’s thunderbolt came back off the bar and Coutinho was the first to pounce before driving home after an incredibly quick counter-attack from Liverpool.
The Hammers goalkeeper Adrian flapped at a high ball and Origi drilled in a fourth.
It was an unhappy end to their first season at London Stadium as the home supporters flooded the exits before the final whistle, leaving in droves!
Rather interestingly they left the players to do their lap of honour in front of a lot of empty seats and jubilant Liverpool fans!
Jurgen Klopp with the final few words on an incredibly exciting afternoon; “We scored the goals and controlled the game and could have scored more, but that’s completely OK that we didn’t.”
“How I said, it was the perfect afternoon.”