EPL

Jurgen Klopp cites impact of Man Utd games as Liverpool lose title race momentum

By Sports Desk April 14, 2024

Jurgen Klopp cited the impact of damaging results against rivals Manchester United following Liverpool’s recent loss of momentum in the title race.

The Reds conceded more ground at the top of the Premier League as they suffered a disappointing 1-0 defeat to Crystal Palace on Sunday.

It capped a highly frustrating week for the Merseysiders after a draw at United last weekend and a humbling Europa League loss to Atalanta on Thursday.

Klopp, however, pinpointed another result at Old Trafford – the dramatic FA Cup loss that ended Liverpool’s quadruple bid last month – as where they started to run out of steam.

The German said: “I think the problem is, a little bit, that I’m not 100 per cent sure that, in general, how we dealt with the United games helped.

“We lost the game in the cup and it was like a catastrophe because we were that good and lost it anyway.

“Then we drew there but were really good for a long spell. We have conceded a little bit.

“That’s now not the reason for today, the problems we had in the United games were completely different to the things we had today, but obviously we expected a reaction.

“We lost in that (United) game more than only the game. It didn’t help.”

Klopp felt his side were not at their best against Palace, who capitalised on a strong start to take a 14th-minute lead through Eberechi Eze.

Yet the hosts still created a number of chances, particularly in the second half, only to be thwarted by a combination of poor finishing or stubborn Palace defending.

Klopp said: “The goal we conceded – he (Eze) ends up completely free in the box, that cannot happen. We had other moments where we were just not together.

“The second half is a really good home game. I’m not sure they had chances but we had a lot – big ones where everybody would think that should be a goal, and other moments where we were nearly there.

“We had momentum, we could put them under pressure, but in the end it was not enough. We have to admit that.

“What it means for the title race – I am not dumb. The answer is pretty easy. If we play like in the first half, why should we win the league? If we play like in the second half, we can win football games.”

Palace’s victory was only their second in seven matches under new manager Oliver Glasner but it eased their fears of being sucked into a relegation battle.

Glasner said: “It is a fantastic win and congratulations to the team for the performance and first half, for the performance in playing football and the confidence we had and the chances we created.

“And congratulations for the passion and spirit we had in the second. We had a fantastic goalkeeper today in Dean (Henderson) and an outstanding passion today to defend as a team.

“That is the reason we kept the clean sheet and won this game.”

Related items

  • Man City star Foden scoops Premier League Player of the Year award Man City star Foden scoops Premier League Player of the Year award

    Phil Foden has been named the Premier League's Player of the Year, having been sensational for Manchester City this season.

    Foden has scored 17 goals and provided a further eight assists in the top flight in 2023-24.

    The 23-year-old has been pivotal in City's quest to win an unprecedented fourth Premier League title.

    Pep Guaridola's team head into their final game of the season, in which they face West Ham at home, needing a win to guarantee the crown.

    Only six players have bettered Foden's goal tally, with the attacker enjoying his most profitable scoring season for City.

    Foden's 17 goals have come from an expected goals figure of 10, suggesting his finishing has been way above what would have been anticipated based on the quality of chances he has had.

    The England international, meanwhile, has had 99 shots, and leads City's squad for chances created (68).

    "To win this award is an achievement that I am extremely proud of," Foden told Man City's official website.

    "Overall, I've been very happy with the way I have played this season and really pleased that I have been able to contribute with the goals and assists throughout the season.

    "I'd like to thank all of the City staff, coaches and especially my teammates because without them this wouldn’t be possible.

    "And I would also like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who voted for me as the award means a lot."

    It is the fifth season in a row that a City player has won the award, with Kevin De Bruyne (2019-20, 2021-22), Ruben Dias (2020-21) and Erling Haaland (2022-23) having scooped it previously.

  • Elneny to leave Arsenal following eight-year stint Elneny to leave Arsenal following eight-year stint

    Mohamed Elneny has confirmed he will be leaving Arsenal after the Gunners' final game of the season.

    Elneny is Arsenal's longest-serving player, having joined the Gunners from Swiss side FC Basel in January 2016.

    Signed by Arsene Wenger, the Egypt international has played under three managers, having also appeared for Unai Emery and Mikel Arteta.

    On Friday, the midfielder confirmed via a video on X (formerly Twitter) that his stint in north London was coming to an end.

    "Gooners, I'm here today to send you a message, to say goodbye and thank you for everything you've done for me," Elneny said in a video posted on X on Friday.

    "The love, the support and the kindness. I'm really going to miss you so much and you'll be in my heart forever."

    Elneny has played 161 times for the Gunners, who face Everton at Emirates Stadium on Sunday. Arteta's team need to win if they are stand a chance of beating Manchester City to the Premier League trophy.

  • Fiorentina 2-2 Napoli: Kvaratskhelia keeps visitors' slim European hopes alive Fiorentina 2-2 Napoli: Kvaratskhelia keeps visitors' slim European hopes alive

    Dethroned Italian champions Napoli's hopes of playing European football next season are hanging by a thread after they played out a 2-2 draw at Fiorentina in Serie A on Friday.

    Napoli took the lead in the eighth minute through defender Amir Rrahmani, who nodded home a corner by Matteo Politano.

    Cristiano Biraghi levelled for Fiorentina in the 40th minute from a free-kick, before M'Bala Nzola put the hosts in front two minutes later when he fired a shot into the bottom corner of the net.

    Napoli's Khvicha Kvaratskhelia responded with another stunning free-kick early in the second half to rescue a point for his team.

    Eighth-placed Fiorentina, on 54 points and with a game in hand, are five points behind Lazio in seventh.

    They can still earn a Europa League spot either by leapfrogging the Rome side or by winning the Europa Conference League final in which they face Greece's Olympiakos on May 29.

    Ninth-placed Napoli, on 52 points, still have a slim chance of making the Europa Conference League playoffs.

    Data Debrief

    Fiorentina left-back Biraghi has now scored six goals from direct free-kicks since the start of 2021-22, which is behind only James Ward-Prowse (seven) - now of West Ham and formerly of Southampton - as the most across Europe's top five leagues in that period.

    Kvaratskhelia also levelled via a direct free-kick, making this the first Serie A match in which both teams scored via that route since Fiorentina against Lazio in April 2018 (Jordan Veretout and Luis Alberto in that case).

© 2023 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.