Klopp con­fi­dent Liverpool will avoid any re­peat of Jan­uary slumps

The Daily Telegraph - Sport - - Premier League - By Chris Bas­combe

Jur­gen Klopp has be­come ac­cus­tomed to a dry Jan­uary dur­ing his time in Eng­land. It is an un­wel­come habit he must shake off to pre­serve Liverpool’s Pre­mier League lead.

Since mov­ing to An­field, Klopp’s win per­cent­age in the month after the new year fire­works fall silent is lower than at any other stage of a sea­son, a mea­gre 30.77 per cent.

Across all com­pe­ti­tions since 2016, Liverpool have lost 11 of 26 Jan­uary fix­tures un­der Klopp’s stew­ard­ship. What­ever the cause of this Jan­uary dif­fi­culty, Liverpool can ill af­ford it to con­tinue when they travel to Brighton to­day seek­ing to ex­tend the four-point gap over Manch­ester City.

Klopp was not aware of the sta­tis­ti­cal quirk, sug­gest­ing it may have more to do with the qual­ity of op­po­si­tion in suc­ces­sive Jan­uarys than a re­cur­ring mid-sea­son dip.

“If the num­bers say it, I don’t know, but I don’t see a spe­cific rea­son for that,” he said. “So far, we’ve lost one Pre­mier League game in Jan­uary [this sea­son] and that was Manch­ester City away. That’s not a sign of a bad record in Jan­uary. It’s just a sign of a re­ally difficult game.

“I’ve never felt bad in Jan­uary,” he added. “It’s just that De­cem­ber is a tough month to go through for all of us.

“We have to build on that ba­sis phys­i­cally and thank God most of the boys can do that be­cause they have stayed healthy. Let’s build on that.”

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