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Klopp Talk: Competition for Starting Spots Necessary for Success

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The boss talks squad competition and rotation as the team head to training camp.

FC Porto v Liverpool - UEFA Champions League Round of 16: First Leg Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images

Following an incredible 5-0 game against FC Porto in the Champions League this week, the Reds have stopped in Marbella, Spain for a four-day training camp. They will be on a ten-day break which Klopp is hoping will give the team enough time to recover and prepare for the upcoming run of games. And now that Klopp has a 25-man squad available to him, he’s keen to see the positive effects of the players competing for their starting spots.

“The boys all want to be a part of it, that’s clear and it’s always good,” Klopp told the club’s official website in Marbella. “If you want to be successful, if you want to win games, it is always good for the training quality.”

“There are different reasons why one or the other didn’t play [in certain training sessions], but they all can play – they are all strong enough. You see Ben Woodburn in a session like this, you forget all the time how old he is!

“It is just impressive. It was a good session, but most of the time our sessions are pretty good.”

With promising training sessions and the incredible advantage of hosting Porto at Anfield with five away goals in hand, Klopp has enough breathing room to consider squad changes as he prepares for Liverpool’s upcoming league fixtures against West Ham and Newcastle. However, whether or not Klopp will take advantage of this breathing room is still unclear.

“We made our rotation in the winter – in November and December – to be now 100 per cent fit,” Klopp said when asked about the possibility of resting players. “Now we are 100 per cent fit, the best players will play all the time.

Adam Lallana has been in and out, in and out but now he is in and hopefully it stays like this because he is very important for us and is another option. Ingsy and Dom Solanke made pressure like crazy, it’s really good. Ragnar Klavan was unlucky with getting really ill and then a little bit injured in the moment when Virgil came in, but he is still a fantastic player.

“We need all of these players and hopefully we have them all available and then we will make a decision, but it’s not that I think now we will rotate before or after. We go for everything.”