Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp in his post-match conference has said he was not surprised how his players reacted to their last defeat as they returned from the international break with a 2-2 draw against Everton at Goodison Park.
The Reds suffered their heaviest defeat in 57 years after they were beaten 7-2 at Villa Park less than a fortnight ago but showed better character and performance in the 237th Merseyside derby on Saturday although the game ended in a draw.
The champions saw goals for Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah canceled out by Michael Keane and Dominic Calvert-Lewin before a stoppage-time winner from captain Jordan Henderson was controversially ruled out for offside by the VAR.
The Reds boss, however, said he is proud of the team’s display and rates the game as the best away derby they’ve played in the five years he’s been at the club.
“I liked the game, really good game from my boys. It was the best away derby we played since I am at Liverpool – top football, conceded goals because of the specific strength of Everton,” Klopp said in his post-match reaction.
“The set-piece was unlucky when they scored, so Virg is not on the pitch and we have to sort that. We sorted it in the game, the only problem was that was, I think, the first corner after he left the pitch, so there was this little moment of disorganisation. They used it – that’s [the] quality of Everton.
“The second goal, we avoided pretty much all situations like this over the 90 minutes but one time we let Digne cross. I heard already when the ball was in the air from the Everton bench, ‘That’s it’ because they know he is really strong in these situations and he scores that goal. Good goal. Our goals were brilliant.”
When asked about the team’s reaction to the defeat at Aston Villa prior to the international break, the Liverpool manager had nothing but praise for his players and said he is ‘not surprised’ how they reacted.
“These boys are exceptional, these boys are a team. I am 100 per cent of the time proud of being their manager, ” Klopp added.
“Yes, in Aston Villa we played an under-average game, a bad game and then you lose in the Premier League a game. We lost 7-2, that doesn’t happen too often. I’m not surprised about the reaction, that’s what I wanted to see but it’s still only a draw.
“But the game, the performance and the reaction, I think everybody who is with us thought today that was pretty good.”
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