Jurgen Klopp has again aggressively supported his own defenders, who’ve conceded 13 goals in seven matches this season.
We let in two against Sevilla on Wednesday, with the Spaniards having just two shots on target throughout the 90.
Dejan Lovren, Ragnar Klavan and Joel Matip have all come in for intense criticism, but Klopp continues to support them – reiterating an odd point he continually makes that there were no alternatives to Virgil van Dijk who were better than what we currently have.
We targeted Southampton’s Dutchman all summer, but they refused to sell and we were not prepared to look elsewhere.
“With all the history before I came in and since I’ve been here with how people talk about these players, you really should try one time to go out there and ask other clubs what they think about these defenders and whether they would like to pick them. You would be really surprised,” Klopp told the Echo.
“I said if there would have been a solution out there we would have done it. There was no solution.
“I cannot speak in this country about any players I tried to get. Give me other centre-halves?”
When asked specifically about Davison Sanchez (who joined Spurs) and Napoli’s Kalidou Koulibaly, Klopp was adamant they’re not better than his current crop.
“No. We watched all of them 500 million times,” he continued.
“Just to cool the people down, what if the new player doesn’t hit the first ball (like Lovren against Sevilla) and he makes exactly the same mistake? A mistake they all made in their life – but it is like ‘He is a £65million signing, he will improve’.
“Why do you think the other one cannot improve? I don’t understand that. We want to make the right decisions. A big part of football and life is really putting faith in the people you work with – trust them – because they all can improve.
“They all can. They are all good out there but they are not that good that you say yes they could help immediately. I had to make a decision and the decision was our boys are not worse than them.
“What I see from all the questions, you start too early coming back to these things. For me it’s really difficult always to come completely on your planet, visit you and say ‘Yeah you’re right, there were five good options out there and we missed them because, I don’t know, we wanted to spend the money anywhere else’.”
It’s honestly hard to believe Klopp’s rhetoric entirely…
There is simply no way he 100% believes that Lovren & Klavan are as good as anything in Europe when Liverpool were sitting on a practically unlimited budget this summer.
Instead, his comments are likely there to inspire his struggling players to improved defensive performances. Let’s hope it works today against Burnley.