Liverpool manager Jürgen Klopp says that he thought his TV was broken when he saw Tottenham were 5-0 down after 21 minutes at Newcastle but claims the humiliation will not be on Spurs’ minds at Anfield on Sunday.
Liverpool boast a formidable home record against Spurs, who have won only once in the league at Anfield since 1993, and would leapfrog Ryan Mason’s side with a fourth successive Premier League win on Sunday. Spurs’ poor record plus the scars from St James’ Park in their most recent away fixture could leave them more vulnerable than usual but Klopp does not expect a hangover from the 6-1 rout.
The Liverpool manager said: “The Newcastle v Tottenham game I came home, switched the TV on and it was 1-0. I had something else to do and wanted to watch the game a bit later, and when I came back in it was 5-0. I honestly thought there was something wrong with the screen, somebody had made a joke or something. Newcastle obviously is in very good moment so these kind of things can happen.
“I never could think in my life like that [about Spurs being scarred at Anfield]. To find for yourself the right attitude in the game you have [to] think the opponent is really strong. And they are strong. A very famous German coach once said: ‘If you always expect an easy game you will never have one, but if you always expect a super difficult game then from time to time you might have an easy one.’ But the other way doesn’t work.
“I have no clue what happened at Tottenham. I see Harry Kane, I see Son, I see Kulusevski, I see Perisic, Richarlison, Højbjerg and so on and they all have played exceptional football during their careers. We had some problems in moments this season and maybe other teams thought: ‘Oh it’s a great moment to play Liverpool.’ Maybe it was, I don’t know, but if I am in the other camp I would never have imagined that Liverpool would show up weak. I cannot think about Tottenham in any other way apart from I expect them to be really strong.”
Klopp insists it is premature to proclaim that Liverpool have found consistency. But he believes the form of Curtis Jones, who has started the past five matches after an injury-plagued season, demonstrates there is more quality and potential in his squad than many suspect.
“If you go to social media you think: ‘Oh my god there is no bigger problem in the world than our midfield,’” he said. “Somebody showed me after the West Ham game a thing on Instagram when people find out our lineup and what they write about it. Not a lot of them wanted Curtis on the pitch, not a lot of them wanted Cody [Gakpo] on the pitch and when they saw Joël Matip was playing they say: ‘How can they do that?’ And these are people who like us usually.
“I understand this season makes people nervous, but we have a lot of potential in this team. We didn’t show it very often this season and we will keep that, improve that and bring in new players. Both is possible.” — Guardian