Press conference analysis: Klopp talks Moreno, injuries and the transfer window
As the Reds face up to a tough challenge heading to Turf Moor this weekend, Jurgen Klopp faced the press to discuss some of the week’s biggest talking points. After an impressive 4-3 victory at the Emirates over Arsenal, the German boss will be desperate to maintain that kind of form as his side face their second away game of the season.
One of the biggest talking points of last weekend was Alberto Moreno’s display, conceding a penalty and arguably at fault for Arsenal’s first half opening goal. However, with the club seemingly not going to make a signing to replace the Spaniard, Klopp defended his full-back:
“If someone doesn’t perform too well we talk about it in a press conference? That’s cool. I can’t be interested in criticism. Alberto played for a reason. Is the world not satisfied with our left-back?”
Klopp’s insistence to defend his player is admirable and is representative of the manager, who almost always sticks up for his players in the face of the press. Moreno’s displays since Klopp’s arrival have been disappointing and frustrating, but the German clearly sees something in the full-back that he can develop into a quality player.
After a superb victory last weekend, Klopp was also keen to keep his players on their toes, insisting that no-one was guaranteed a place in the starting eleven come Saturday afternoon:
“I haven’t made a decision on the line-up for Saturday yet. It’s my job to watch who gives me what signs.”
Klopp is an astute man manager, and it would be foolish for him to allow his players to rest on their laurels after just one competitive game. With training still at high intensity levels as the Reds regain fitness to peak levels at Melwood, this statement is a clear motivation for the likes of Emre Can who are expected to be pushing for a place in the starting eleven.
Much will depend on the fitness of some of his biggest stars. With James Milner, Daniel Sturridge, Mamadou Sakho and Lucas Leiva amongst those to miss out injured last weekend, there was an additional injury scare this week as Sadio Mane was sent to hospital with a shoulder injury. Klopp shone some light on the situation of all of these players, saying:
“It was a challenge between two players in the air and Sadio fell on his shoulder. It’s not that serious. It won’t take a long time but I don’t know yet whether he will be available for this weekend.”
The news is great for Liverpool, as new £30 million signing Mane excelled in last week’s victory alongside Roberto Firmino and Philippe Coutinho, and is expected to start at Burnley. However, Klopp may be reluctant to risk the former Southampton man if he is not fully fit.
The German also explained that James Milner and Daniel Sturridge are now in full training and are available for selection this weekend, with Lucas Leiva and Mamadou Sakho also nearing a return to full training.
The manager also confirmed that the club does not expect to make any more new additions to the squad before the season starts, though outgoings are possible:
“We will only take another one if it’s the guy we want. Problem with transfers is no-one cares about players still here. If we expect commitment from the players then we have to show commitment too.”
It represents a clear switch in transfer policy as the Reds moved quickly to secure their transfer targets early, with all of the club’s incoming players having joined in time for the US tour, helping bonding and team spirit as much as fitness levels and tactical work. It’s believed that this was vital to Klopp and marks a clear change to the chaos that ruled under times under Brendan Rodgers.
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