Jurgen Klopp reckons Liverpool’s victory at Tottenham is ‘exactly what he expects from his side’ and credited his players for their running to winnings ways in North London.
The Reds are back in the top four and ended an eight-hour wait for a Premier League goal in their 3-1 win at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.
Roberto Firmino tapped the visitors ahead four minutes into first-half stoppage time.
Trent Alexander-Arnold then doubled Liverpool’s advantage minutes after the break. Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg fired in a fine effort to keep Spurs in touching distance, but the game was over when Sadio Mane smashed home a third.
The result means it’s a return to the top four for Liverpool. They will also hope the much-needed victory proves a turning point in their season after a tough period of late.
The Reds manager was clearly a happy man and said it was much more what he expects from his side.
Klopp told BT Sport: “I am delighted – it was a great game. Super intensity as we predicted. We scored the goals in the right moments, the right people scored the goals, so all good apart from their goal.
“What I saw today it’s not about shape or form it’s about who we are. That was us. Second half especially it was us, it was a massive fight. I don’t remember that Spurs had a lot of the ball but we defended it very well. A good performance and I saw a lot of things I wanted to see.
"What I saw today was who we are."
"It was a massive fight, and the football obviously on top of that."
"I saw a lot of things I wanted to see, yes."
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) January 28, 2021
“You cannot really be sure that you will score goals like this in the second half because they made two changes.”
Citing the things Liverpool did well, Klopp added: “Offensively we coped well with their formation. We played in between the lines and were so often around the box, the counter press was really good, we were high enough defensively but not crazy high.”
Rumours had been circulating prior to kick-off at Tottenham that the Brazilian would miss out. And when the team sheet was announced, it confirmed the Brazilian has become the latest to fall foul of Liverpool’s defensive injury curse.
With the club explaining his absence was down to a “minor muscle issue”, Klopp refused to divulge any more information ahead of the game.
When questioned by BT Sport‘s Des Kelly, Klopp was giving little away.
“It was nothing, he just felt something [in training] and we had to take him out and now he’s out,” Klopp explained.
“It was not a challenge, intense or anything, just how things happen.”
Alexander-Arnold hails Liverpool win
Alexander-Arnold, meanwhile, put in a man of the match display and admitted the three points were a welcome relief.
“We needed that and we deserved it,” he told BT Sport. “We dominated most of the game. They had the goal disallowed which probably would’ve changed the game. We came with a game plan which we executed perfectly and we deserve the three points.
“Goals in games like this change the way the opposition play. Tthey had to come out a bit more in the second half. We could find the space easier and we had our chances and put a few away.
“We’ve had set back after set back especially in the centre back area and Joel Matip played well and then Nathaniel Phillips in the second half. They have both done a great job which shows the quality we have round the pitch. For myself, it’s always good to get a goal and help the team.”
Asked what was different and the full-back didn’t really have an answer.
“Nothing has really changed, we’re the same team we always have been,” he said. “We have the same mentality going into games, we respect the opposition. We have the expectation on ourselves that we should win the game and this was a whole performance from the lads.”