Premier League • England

Klopp reveals what he ‘likes least’ about managing Liverpool; clarifies Jota injury status

Jurgen Klopp raises an apologetic hand after Leicester beat Liverpool, December 2021

Jurgen Klopp said “I don’t like it but it’s part of it” when stating the most difficult thing about managing Liverpool, and provided some clarity on the Diogo Jota injury.

Liverpool remain in the hunt for four trophies this season, and will need every bit of their newfound depth down the stretch. The Reds have avoided the type of injury crisis that derailed their campaign last year thus far this season. However, in-form Portuguese forward Diogo Jota suffered an ankle ligament injury on Wednesday night.

Jota sustained the injury during the 2-0 victory over Inter Milan. Roberto Firmino will now take back his centre-forward spot, though for how long, Klopp couldn’t say.

Speaking in his Friday press conference (via the Liverpool Echo), Klopp provided an update on the Jota injury as best he could.

“No he will not be available (this weekend),” said Klopp of Jota. “We need further assessment. Some ligaments around the ankle. Everything is possible. It could go quick or the other way. We have to wait.”

Klopp jokes about Salah milestone

On the subject of Mohamed Salah – who notched his 149th goal for the club at the San Siro – Klopp described his Egyptian forward’s output as “insane”.

“I am only seven years here,” said Klopp. “The club is so much older with so many great players.

“This team is one of the better ones and Mo has played a big part in that. His numbers are insane. You say 150, only recently we spoke about 100!

Robbie Fowler calls out Alexander-Arnold as Liverpool weak point

Robbie Fowler calls out Alexander-Arnold as Liverpool weak point

Liverpool legend Robbie Fowler has said that Trent Alexander-Arnold is Liverpool’s weakness during Inter Milan match

“We are happy when the dressing room is full (following the AFCON returns). Having Mo back is really good news.

“He got the same reception as Sadio and Naby. We didn’t think finally we can win games when he is back. We did that when he was away.”

On Firmino, who returned to scoring ways with a superb glanced header against Inter, Klopp added: “Bobby could be in each XI every single day because of his quality.

“It was one of the most important away goals we’ve scored. It calmed everything down and we got the momentum back.”

“It’s the part I like least” – Klopp

Harvey Elliott was handed his Champions League debut at the San Siro and is pushing Liverpool’s more established midfielders for regular gametime.

Summer signing Ibrahima Konate put in his best Liverpool display yet against Inter, while Luis Diaz has added another dimension to the forward line.

That has given Klopp headaches all across the pitch regarding team selection, and the German admitted having to leave quality players out who have done nothing wrong is what he likes least about management.

And given Liverpool’s newfound strength in depth, it’s something Klopp will have to contend with week in, week out.

On how captain Jordan Henderson reacted to his benching before playing an important role off the bench, Klopp said: “I’m sure he would have expected to start. That was a perfect example of how to respond.

“Naby same, brilliant when he came on. Same Bobby, Luis. You can have best squad in the world but if players lose confidence when they don’t start you have problems.

“It’s the part I like least. It’s easy if boys give me reasons. None of these players deserve it so far. All the decisions are really difficult. I don’t like it but it’s part of it. But there might be a chance you start.

“Be angry or disappointed with me, no problem. But show up. Make the decisions difficult and don’t drop in training. But that’s never happened. The group is incredible. If the players want to talk to me, it comes after the game.”

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