Jurgen Klopp praises Liverpool for Champions League win with outsiders waiting for Reds to ‘slip up again’

A first win in four for the Reds to put them in control in the last-16 tie

Karl Matchett
Tuesday 16 February 2021 22:54
comments
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp
Leer en Español

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp praised his players for returning to winning ways in the Champions League in the face of expectation that they would continue to fail, following difficult recent results.

The Reds beat RB Leipzig 2-0 thanks to goals from Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane, putting themselves in a great position to reach the quarter-finals after this first away leg, played in Budapest.

Referencing the weekend loss to Leicester, the manager said that confidence won’t be rebuilt entirely on the back of this result alone but acknowledged it was an important step forward.

READ MORE: Champions League knock-out fixtures by date and time

“A really good game against a good side,” Klopp told BT Sport.

“It was tough, we had two days in between [Leicester and this game] and a long flight, we’ll arrive home early in the morning and recover again.

“We cannot build ‘mentality giants’ in one game. We won and it’s nice, I know a lot of people were waiting for us to slip again and we didn’t.”

Expanding on his thoughts that outsiders wanted the Reds to slip-up further after three straight defeats, Klopp said it was a natural effect of people wanting the team at the top to stumble.

“I don’t think motivation works like this [wanting to prove a point]. We all know it, its clear we were two years really good and this year we have some problems - it’s really normal that talk starts.

“A lot of people expected us to slip because of the situation and the boys didn’t that’s what I’m happy about.”

The second leg takes place on 10 March, but the Reds have three more domestic matches before then, starting with the Merseyside derby with Everton at the weekend which has become a crucial top-four clash.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

View comments