Jurgen Klopp has vowed to tackle one of the biggest challenges of his Liverpool career with hard work and stressed he is not looking for excuses.
Without a Premier League goal since December 27, and on the back of a first Anfield defeat since April 2017, Klopp is aware the pressure involved in Saturday’s FA Cup shootout with Manchester United has intensified.
Liverpool have enjoyed great success over the last three years, but they have hit a significant period of poor form for the first time and how Klopp deals with it will determine how their campaign pans out.
The first opportunity to put things right is at Old Trafford and, though he will be without captain Jordan Henderson, Klopp will start Roberto Firmino, Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane, intent on making amends.
‘Everything we did in the last five years felt like a challenge,’ said Klopp. ‘It’s a different challenge now. Whether it’s bigger or not, I don’t know. That’s the job.
‘It’s not like the moment we won the league, I put my feet on the desk and thought, “That’s it” and smoked a cigar thinking, “Well done!”.
‘It’s not a situation you want, but it’s a situation. And if you aren’t happy with a situation, then work.
‘That’s what we do. I don’t know if we can change it immediately, but we will not stop trying — I promise.’
How much Liverpool’s fortunes would change if they signed a centre back is open to debate. Klopp will not rule out making an addition before the window closes in nine days, but Liverpool are not close to any deals as it stands.
‘I’m responsible for a big part of this football club, but there are people who are responsible for the whole thing and I cannot make their decision,’ said Klopp. ‘I know they are with us, I know they want to support us and they do.
‘Yes, a centre back would help 100 per cent. Would we score more goals with one? I’m not sure. Would it give us a little more stability in specific moments? Probably, yes. But it’s not about what it would be like with somebody else.
‘We have never ever spoken in a transfer window about it because that would be an excuse and we don’t need that.’
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