Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp reacts after his side’s 1-0 defeat to Real Madrid in Paris on Saturday night.
Jurgen Klopp has offered his two cents after his side fell at the final hurdle to Real Madrid last night in the Champions League.
Marred by pandemonium outside of the stadium, the final failed to replicate the drama seen in this season’s edition of the competition, Liverpool losing by a goal to nil.
Vinicius Jr provided the only goal of the game, finishing from close range after an arrowed cross courtesy of the right-sided Valverde.
Chances were few and far between for Madrid, with Liverpool enjoying the more possession and consequent opportunities to net albeit unsuccessfully.
The latter was less of a slight on the Reds’ potency and more so thanks to the inspired performance of Los Blancos goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois.
Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah were both denied from close range, the pick of the bunch a disguised effort by the former which Courtois dived low to tip onto the post.
Perhaps owing to the minutes clocked this season, Liverpool appeared unusually leggy in the latter stages which could also be attributed to the frustration at failing to make their positive work pay.
Although still pragmatic in their approach, Carlo Ancelotti’s side was set out slightly more advanced in regard to positioning as Liverpool implemented a less extreme press in terms of intensity.
Madridistas will argue the result was fully deserved for their side, notwithstanding the balance of play, after Benzema had a goal disallowed for an ambiguous VAR enforced offside decision on the cusp of half-time.
Konate and Fabinho collided to bundle the ball into the Frenchman’s path, therefore, adding to the confusion as to why the goal didn’t stand.
Jurgen Klopp assesses the damage
“It’s not bad to get to the final – it’s kind of a success although not the success you want to have,” he told BT Sport.
The German manager’s team sustained an attack on all fronts in 2021/22, winning both domestic trophies – FA Cup and Carabao Cup – while missing out by a singular goal and point in both the Champions League and Premier League respectively.
Supporters and members of the team alike would no doubt swap the two in their possession for the two that slipped away, but their presence in all competitions must be viewed as a success of sorts.
"“I have a strong feeling we will come again,” Klopp added, echoing this sentiment.‘The boys are really competitive and are an outstanding group – they will be that again next season. And we go again. Where’s it next season? Istanbul? Book the hotel!”“The mood in the dressing room makes it feel like not a great season in this moment – we’ll need a few minutes or hours for that.”Via: Sky Sports"
Compiling Liverpool’s misery, the tie had a feeling of déjà vu as they failed to avenge the demons of 2018, in which they lost to the same opponents.
"“We played a good, not a perfect game,” stated Klopp.“A perfect game wouldn’t have been possible with how the opponent set up with the deep formation, counter-attacks and long balls – that was tricky. Like the disallowed goal in the first half was a long ball that we couldn’t defend in the first place. We had a lot of shots but not the clearest – only three forced (Thibaut) Courtois into top saves.”Via: Sky Sports"
It was truly a goalkeeping performance for the ages by Thibaut Courtois, the Belgian keeper becoming the first keeper to make nine saves in a Champions League final.
The disappointment will take a while to digest for Liverpool but taking an objective view and considering the improvement seen from last season, this campaign is one to be marvelled at for Jurgen Klopp and his players.