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Jürgen Klopp Reflects on First Half of 2023-24 and Calls for More Noise

Liverpool enter 2024 in first place but the manager thinks there’s room for improvement in the second half of the season.

Liverpool Training Session Photo by John Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images

Liverpool spent Christmas looking up at first-place Arsenal in the Premier League table after a December 23rd draw between the sides but enter the new year first thanks to their Boxing Day victory over Burnley while the Gunners have stumbled.

A pair of losses against West Ham and Fulham have dealt a significant blow to the London hopefuls, but now it’s Liverpool’s turn to play a game in hand and being top of the table comes with its own pressures—especially with Manchester City also chasing.

“This is not a moment for us to look for a fresh start,” said Liverpool manager Jürgen Klopp. “It is a time when we have to continue with the hard work that we have done in the first half of the season and build on it in the second.

“There have been so many positives that it would not make sense to list them all, but the biggest one is definitely that there are still a lot of improvements for us to make. This is where our focus has to be: doing everything we possibly can to take the next steps.”

Arsenal’s stumble saw the Gunners drop to fourth and City shoot past them—level on points but with better goal differential and a game in hand—and speak to the tight margins in any title challenge in the Premier League’s sportswashing era.

Historically, City have tended to keep things interesting in the first half of seasons before things get serious in the new year—and Pep Guardiola’s side starts chewing through the opposition like the world’s most expensive collection of footballers they are.

There is promise for the Reds, though, in the knowledge that as Klopp says, there’s room for improvement in his Liverpool side. And it’s hard to quibble about being sat first on January 1st knowing you can be much, much better.

To help with that, he’s hoping that after Anfield brought its best to the pre-Christmas duel with Arsenal, they will bring that same energy for Newcastle to kick off 2024 and help push the Liverpool side to even higher heights in the second half of the season.

“The backing you gave us against Arsenal, it was truly exceptional and I absolutely loved it,” Klopp said to the supporters. “When the atmosphere is like this it is hard to imagine that there could be a better place to play or watch football.

“But—and being a manager of this club there always has to be a ‘but’ because the responsibility has to be to drive the highest standards—it left me wanting more. I know this is a big ask but then I also know that the conditions will be in place for a repeat.

“We will have, if not the very same people in every case, then definitely the same type of people, the same stadium, the same opportunity to create something special. Hopefully between us we can start the year in a good way.”

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