End of an era for Jurgen Klopp as he talks Liverpool ‘reinvention’ after Napoli hammering; Robertson calls on players to ‘wake up’

·4-min read
Jurgen Klopp Napoli v Liverpool Credit: PA Images
Jurgen Klopp Napoli v Liverpool Credit: PA Images

Jurgen Klopp admits he needs to ‘really think’ about what happened as Liverpool were thumped 4-1 in their Champions League opener at Napoli, but admits it may be time for ‘reinvention’.

Klopp’s side were 3-0 down at half-time in Naples but it could easily have been more as Alisson saved a penalty and Virgil van Dijk made a goalline block.

Piotr Zielinski put Napoli ahead from the spot in the fifth minute after Victor Osimhen had hit the post.

Andre-Frank Anguissa and Giovanni Simeone extended Napoli’s lead, before Zielinski scored again after the break.

Liverpool’s sole striker came from Luis Diaz, who was one of their rare decent performers on the night.

And speaking after the game, Klopp told BT Sport: “Really tough to take, it’s not that difficult to explain when you watched the game.

“To start with the two penalties, OK first of all Napoli played a really good game. We didn’t, that is the first explanation for the defeat.

“They scored one penalty and missed another but the next two goals we served on a plate and we should defend better. 3-0 down having chances but never really in the game. We were not compact defensively or offensively.

“Until Thiago entered the pitch I cannot remember one counter-pressing situation, we were too wide.

“Everything is obvious but why it happened, I cannot answer now, let me think about it. It is a really tough cookie to take, but I have to take it.

“We played bad in the first half but usually we don’t concede three goal. With Alisson in goal, you have to be really bad for that to happen. We played here when we lost 2-0 and that was an awful game.

“It looks like we have to reinvent ourselves. There is a lot of things lacking, the fun part is that we have to do it in the middle of a Premier League an Champions League season.

“We have Wolves on Saturday and if they saw the game tonight, they cannot stop laughing, they would say – and I would too – it is the perfect moment to play them. We have to set up better in pretty much everything.

“Lots of soul searching, you could see that on the pitch. We are not working as a team, it is not personal stuff or pointing (at each other).

In football there are always solutions. We don’t play good enough, that is obvious and that is why we lose games. We play in the strongest league in the world and have a pretty good Champions League group. There is a job to do, my responsibility and I need time to think about it. There are a few obvious things and we have to reset and go.”

Robertson tells it like it is

Reds defender was brutally honest on his assessment of the game, adding: “We were miles too open. You can’t come to a place like this and not be compact. They were by miles the better team.

“Too many times they had spaces to run at us and cause us problems. You come away in the Champions League and you can’t be wide open like that. We have to get back to basics and be compact.

“We deserve this result. The way we were wide open they found so many spaces. It felt like they had an extra man.

“You have to be ready to fight. We weren’t close enough to our mate.

“We have to wake up and quickly because we can’t perform like that.”

READ MORE: Klopp blocked Liverpool star’s exit to Champions League contender

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