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Klopp Talk: The Best Kind Of Defending Is Keeping The Ball

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Klopp talks a bit more about balance and playing to the squad’s strengths.

Crystal Palace v Liverpool - Premier League Photo by Christopher Lee/Getty Images

There are many refreshing things about having Jürgen Klopp as a manager. His charm, his candor, his optimism, his confidence. His knowledge, and comfort with the players. It’s pretty clear that he knows the players well, and knows their strengths, and it was a quality that many were eager to see him build upon with his first full preseason with the current squad. Ten plus matches in we’ve been watching the fruits of that labor, with a focus more on scoring goals and pressing, moving forward than protecting in the back. There are still arguments and debates to be had, of course, but the club is in the business of results and currently Liverpool are sharing the top spot on the table - one of the best results they could ask for.

“We don't do it because we want to show something, we do it because this kind of football helps us, because we think the best kind of defending is keeping the ball,” Klopp said to the Echo following yesterday’s match. “In our world, that's how it is. As long as we have the ball, it's quite logical, so it's not about entertaining.”

Yes, the fast pace and hard press of Liverpool’s front line is entertaining, but Klopp is adamant about playing more to the strengths of the players than entertainment value.

“Yes (it's the most effective way),” he admits. “When you have these boys it makes sense. That's how it is. They are able to do it and that's all what we think about.”

Klopp does practice caution with his optimism, adding that not every game will be won with that attacking focus.

“It is no guarantee for anything, so you need to start new in each game always, there are different things to do,” Klopp said. “At Crystal Palace, it was completely different to West Brom last week, even when a few things of course were similar.

“You have to react and use another space, and then stay in the game and stay really kind of angry when you feel really good.

“That's another challenge, that was in the first 15 minutes which I didn't really like, playing bam-bam-bam like this, making all these moves and not shooting or finishing, it makes not too much sense.

“We only do it because we think it helps.”