Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp is content with the performances of Joel Matip and Dejan Lovren against West Brom despite the criticism that has come their way of late.
The Reds continued their winning ways in the Premier League as they dispatched West Brom 2-1. They dominated the game from the opening whistle, but seemed to lift their foot off the pedal post the eighty-minute mark, and were forced to fight tooth and nail until the end to hold on to their narrow advantage.
Sadio Mane’s well-timed effort gave Liverpool the lead in the first half and Philippe Coutinho’s incisive finish from close range doubled the lead for Jurgen Klopp’s men. While the Reds were hoping to secure their second clean sheet in as many games, Gareth McAuley’s late strike spoiled their part and gave the Baggies something to play for until the closure of the contest.
Liverpool have struggled to defend set plays in the past, and they conceded a cynical from a dead-ball situation once again. In fact, it was the 17th goal that Liverpool have conceded from set pieces under Klopp’s one-year reign at Anfield.
Critics have taken no prisoners in berating the defence of Klopp’s side, but the German is unfazed by their claims that Liverpool cannot defend from dead-ball scenarios. According to the Guardian, Klopp said that he has lost respect for the critics.
“I’ve heard this a few times and I lose respect when people say this. It’s not important because I don’t have to respect everybody and you can say what you want but I cannot say more,” said the Liverpool boss.
“If people say we have some issues with set pieces, how can I say they are wrong? I think 70-80% of the goals we have conceded are from set pieces. But they are all different and we are still working on it and we defended against Manchester United brilliantly.
“Against West Brom it was so difficult but we have no defensive problem. When the ball is in the air, [Salomon] Rondon wants the ball or a foul, so Dejan and Joel were outstanding.” he added.
Klopp has bestowed his faith in new signing Loris Karius, and despite his return of just one clean sheet this term, he is continuing to be ahead of Simon Mignolet in the pecking order. Liverpool’s back-line is also currently a work in progress and it may take Dejan Lovren and Joel Matip few more games to build an understanding between each other.