Norwich 0-3 Liverpool: Jurgen Klopp reaction
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Jurgen Klopp has hailed the three ‘new’ players who he thinks have made a difference to Liverpool’s team this season. The Reds are unbeaten in their opening five Premier League matches having suffered a disappointing campaign last term.
Liverpool have beaten Norwich City, Burnley, Leeds United and Crystal Palace without conceding a goal against any of those sides this term. The only time goalkeeper Alisson Becker has conceded was when Kai Havertz opened the scoring in the club’s 1-1 draw with Chelsea.
It is a vastly better record than Klopp’s side managed last season. A defensive injury crisis meant that the German was not able to consistently name the same back four.
They conceded 42 goals in 38 matches and that was partly to blame for the derailing of their league title defence.
But several players have now returned from their respective injuries and Klopp has described them as like having new players.
Virgil van Dijk had his season ended prematurely in October but returned to fitness in pre-season. Joel Matip has also featured after overcoming a long-term issue.
Liverpool completed the signing of Ibrahima Konate during the transfer window and is the third ‘new’ player Klopp describes. The Anfield outfit triggered the Frenchman’s £36million transfer clause at RB Leipzig.
Asked what has changed to improve his side’s defensive record, Klopp quipped: “Ali (Alisson Becker) in moments! He just makes brilliant saves.
“It’s not as if nobody has had a shot on target against us.”
He continued: “As you say, we have defended pretty well so far. We said before the season, and nobody wanted to hear it, we have three new players without buying them.
“We have Joel and Virgil. We brought in Ibou (Konate).
“I think Crystal Palace was the last time we changed completely. They had never played with each other before, so it was not about that. You just need to have a clear defending attitude and that’s what we have.
“We had that last year as well. When you have that, the players you rely on immediately.
“Last year when we had the likes of Rhys Williams, they played the last line and defended really well. We just needed time to adapt to that.
“This year, we had time during the pre-season to work on it. But that does not mean that we will get to matchday 38 and still only have one goal conceded.
“We means we are more stable in the moment and that’s what we need to be to be successful. If you want to be successful you need to be consistent. Our consistency means that we defend well because you cannot fly every day and score an awful lot of goals.
“You have to defend and you have to grind out results from time to time. That’s what we have done so far but that is only the start.”
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