Top Kop

> Klopp salutes Liver­pool de­spite Saints stale­mate

The Sun (Malaysia) - - SPORTS -

JUR­GEN KLOPP praised Liver­pool’s performance in the goal­less draw against Southamp­ton even though the Reds missed the chance to ce­ment their po­si­tion on top of the Premier League.

Manch­ester City drew level with Liver­pool by win­ning 2-1 at Crys­tal Palace and are only in sec­ond place on goals scored.

Klopp watched Liver­pool dom­i­nate at St Mary’s, but although Southamp­ton goal­keeper Fraser Forster made one ex­cel­lent save in the first half to foil Sa­dio Mane, Liver­pool were waste­ful with Philippe Coutinho, Roberto Firmino and Nathaniel Clyne all cul­pa­ble in the sec­ond half.

“We had enough chances to win the game, es­pe­cially in the sec­ond half,” Klopp said. “But I’m fine with the performance, ab­so­lutely.

“Two things are im­por­tant in foot­ball: the re­sult and the performance. The re­sult was not per­fect but the performance was bet­ter than we could have ex­pected when we think about our prepa­ra­tions, when Phil and Robert came back late on Thurs­day.

“It’s nearly the same for all teams but for play­ers from South Amer­ica it’s a lit­tle bit more be­cause they have long flights.

And when you play a draw it’s bet­ter that you should have won than that you should have lost.”

Southamp­ton played de­fen­sively although at home, which Klopp noted, while pay­ing a back-handed com­pli­ment to their man­ager Claude Puel’s set-up.

Puel’s ex­pla­na­tion for keep­ing 10 men be­hind the ball for most of the match was, in turn, a com­pli­ment to Liver­pool.

“It is not our tac­tic, it is just that we played a very good team with good, phys­i­cal play­ers who are also tech­ni­cal and they have a good spirit,” he said.

“It is very dif­fi­cult to play against this team, they score lots of goals and it is very dif­fi­cult to de­velop our game.

“It is a good point and it is de­served for my play­ers be­cause of their at­ti­tude and their qual­ity.” – AFP

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