Liverpool: Jurgen Klopp suggests fixture congestion caught up with top teams

Reds missed the chance to go clear at the top but stay level on points with Spurs

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Jurgen Klopp suggested his team’s poor start to the match in the 1-1 draw with Fulham was down to the difficult schedule of the season catching up with Liverpool - as well as other teams around the Premier League.

None of the first five teams who played this weekend after midweek Champions League or Europa League games managed to take three points, with the Manchester clubs drawing against each other, Chelsea losing to Everton, Tottenham drawing against Crystal Palace and the Reds following suit here.

The Liverpool boss was unimpressed with the start, but did praise his team’s reaction after falling behind.

READ MORE: Premier League fixtures and table - all matches by date and kick-off time

“We didn’t play well. I cannot write a book, throw it on the pitch and they read it. If you don’t have a good start then you can start again and again - we needed half an hour to get our feet in the game,” he told Sky Sports.

“Second half was good but [Fulham had] the momentum, the fans here, fighting for the result - we could have lost the game in the first 30, but the next 60 were really good.

“We deal with human beings and things like this can happen. They should not, but can. All the teams in Europe had a tough one, it was crazy, so maybe this was the night and weekend when we all felt it a little bit.”

Captain Jordan Henderson echoed his manager’s thoughts, saying that the Reds must be on their game far quicker in future.

Their next fixture is in midweek, at home to Tottenham Hotspur which will be a meeting of the current top two, and the midfielder says it was a group malaise which affected the performance against Fulham and which must be eradicated.

"We didn’t get going until after 30 minutes which you can’t do or you get punished and we did. The good thing is we reacted well after that, dominated the second half and maybe should have scored one or two more.

“We’re disappointed with the start but pleased with the reaction. Everyone made a slow start, it wasn’t just a few of us and they started really well, so we’ll have to look at it and move on quickly. We can’t start [games] like that going forward.”

This weekend get a £10 free bet with Betfair, when you bet £10 on a Same Game Multi on the Premier League. Terms: Min £10 Same Game Multi bet on any EPL match this Fri - Sun. Free bet valid for 72 hours, awarded at bet settlement. Excludes cashed out bets. T&Cs apply.

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