HomePremier LeagueJurgen Klopp: Liverpool may be overachieving, but full focus on delivering title

Jurgen Klopp: Liverpool may be overachieving, but full focus on delivering title

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While Jurgen Klopp acknowledges Liverpool’s Premier League title challenge has come ahead of schedule, he has pledged the Reds will make the most of their position and give everything to lift the trophy.

Liverpool go to Goodison Park to face Everton on Wednesday, in what will be Klopp’s final Merseyside derby at the helm.

All three title contenders – Arsenal, Liverpool and Manchester City – are in action twice this week, with City currently trailing their two challengers by one point but possessing a game in hand.

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After Liverpool surrendered control of the title race with a 1-0 defeat to Crystal Palace earlier this month, some suggested the Reds’ position represented an overachievement after they finished fifth last season.

While Klopp says he would never limit the ambitions of his players, he accepts Champions League qualification was Liverpool’s primary target when the season began.

“I don’t limit ourselves with negative expectations. Before the season it was clear: We didn’t qualify for the Champions League and that’s a real problem, financially, for a club like us,” he said.

“So that’s number one, and we had to build a squad to try for the Champions League. In the league, there were six or seven teams; Arsenal, City, us, Aston Villa – it was 100 per cent clear they would be around – then Tottenham.

“United and Chelsea are not involved for whatever reason, but you could not imagine that before the start of the season. There are four spots and you fight for that – that’s a massive achievement already.

“I don’t say that now just because it looks like we might qualify for the Champions League, that’s the job we had to do.

“Then if you are there and it’s not too big a distance, so you want to challenge for everything… that’s where we are now.”

Klopp also said he was bemused by suggestions Liverpool had squandered a promising position with their recent defeat to Palace, which put the title race back in City’s hands.

“In general, it’s a lesson for life, you should never forget where you have come from,” Klopp said. “That means you can really enjoy the moment and go for it.

“Now, in that one week, it was as if we had something to lose. I just don’t understand that, I don’t get that. All of a sudden, things changed a little bit.

“Yes, now we don’t have it in our hands, but who in the past had that all the time? We have to be there if someone slips up, we cannot become the favourite overnight and have something to lose – that makes no sense.

“That’s how everybody wants to see it, I can’t change it. That’s just the way I see it. For me, we are where we should be, and now let’s make the absolute best of it. As long as there’s a chance, we should give it a proper try.”

Harry Carr
Harry Carr
Harry is a freelance sports journalist with experience of working for the Racing Post, Stats Perform, Opta Analyst and more, covering major events across all sports but holding a particular love for the beautiful game.

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