Whether today's home win was a case of “winning ugly” or merely being unconvincing in victory can be debated, but Liverpool needed three points in pursuit of a top four finish. Arsenal and Manchester United now have two games in hand, but Jürgen Klopp’s men have points on the board.
Beating teams in the top six and triumphing in Merseyside derbies without besting teams like Burnley won’t be enough to achieve Champions League football, so it was heartening to see Liverpool come through a tough and tense game at Anfield.
While Klopp was aware of the need to improve in the games ahead, he was ultimately pleased that his players could find a way to win.
“Burnley were always in the game, it was intense and we had to fight,” Klopp admitted after the game. “We had some moments, it was not only luck that we scored before half-time and it was a wonderful goal from Emre Can.
“It is clear we have to do a few things better. We were not at our absolute best but we fought. I liked it, it is this kind of game we haven't won until now. It feels kind of strange a little bit. Not the most memorable game but a very nice three points.”
Liverpool’s next game is a trip to the Etihad Stadium to face Manchester City before the international break—a game that should suit the tactics and strengths of Klopp’s current squad. Most of the remaining ten games will be against teams that will try to reduce space and exploit certain tactical shortcomings, but after consecutive league wins for the first time this year, Liverpool can look forward with confidence.