Despite speaking at length to the media last night following Liverpool’s draw with Rubin Kazan, Jurgen Klopp was back in the press room this morning for the pre-Southampton conference.
The German discussed last night’s disappointing draw, Daniel Sturridge’s seemingly ever ending injuries, the possibility of him using two centre-forwards together in the future.
Klopp claims that he will think about playing two up top – but has sent a warning that they must work hard defensively if he does so.
On Southampton, the manager has identified Graziano Pelle as a threat, while assuring journalists that he has total faith in the creative qualities of his squad – who’ve so far scored just once in two matches.
The Saints have picked up seven points from their past three matches and are in-form, and it’d be fantastic for Klopp to pick up his first victory at Anfield on Sunday.
The Liverpool Echo picked up some of the best quotes:
On FA/Rossiter row:
“I’m 48 and need to learn over my choice of words (regarding Rossiter and the FA) but it’s ok. Sometimes I have to learn to take better words – but I had the same problem in German language so it’s not my English!
“Of course I’m not happy, but I could have informed them before I talked to you. We have to talk about it and that’s what we will do.”
“(His situation) is not much better, we have to see day by day. If he can train tomorrow completely normal then he’s an option.
“Maybe not as a starter but he’s an option and I have to wait.”
Creativity in the final third:
“I didn’t expect we would run through the league from the moment I started. This league is too strong.
“But I have seen many things, I’m not sure what was there before but I saw many (good) things.
“My job is to give the team some ideas in the box.”
“We have started analysing Southampton, I know much more about them. I saw the game against Chelsea, not too bad!
“We have to look at the players after a intense game, but we know their strengths. They are well organised and try to press high with six players, so maybe you can find a way.
“We can play football, but if not we can play long balls – that’s what they do. They want to play football and if not they have Pelle!
“They are in good shape. They were close to a victory against Leicester.”
On playing two up top:
“If all the strikers are fit we have four and we have to think about how we take that quality in our game.
“I don’t know if we play with two on Sunday, but it’s an option. Christian and Roberto had two training sessions with the team, usually it’s too early but they did well.
“Christian was unlucky with the post, Roberto became better within the game. Two important options for Sunday.”
What he expects from his strikers:
“Isn’t it one of the oldest things you say about football? Defending begins (at the front). They have to find the right position to give the opponent the biggest problems.
“You have to help, of course you have to defend, all strikers have to. Cristiano Ronaldo has to defend.
“If they score five goals a game we’ll find a way to defend without them if they don’t want to defend. But they will defend!”
“I trust in the quality of the players.
“It’s not easy to compare, but in my first season in Dortmund we had 15 draws, if you want it’s a half win! You don’t lose. We have to get more stable.
“It’s only important that you make the right decisions at the right moments. They have the quality to finish and create chances. We did that against a very deep defending opponent.
“It’s hard work. It’s how football is.”