Monday 21 October 2019

'He is a smart fox' - Jurgen Klopp accuses Carlo Ancelotti of mind games ahead of Napoli clash

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp during the press conference REUTERS/Ciro De Luca
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp during the press conference REUTERS/Ciro De Luca Newsdesk Newsdesk

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp believes Napoli counterpart Carlo Ancelotti is playing mind games with his praise of the German.

Ancelotti hailed Klopp's Liverpool as one of the best teams in Europe ahead of Wednesday night's Champions League clash in Naples.

But Klopp said at his press conference: "As we say in Germany, 'He's obviously a smart fox'. Saying all these nice things about me, but it is tactics already. He's trying to bring the nice fella out in me."

Klopp was sent off on his last visit to Napoli's Stadio San Paolo when Borussia Dortmund manager, in 2013, for berating the fourth official.

He afterwards described his behaviour as "pathetic" and said he had made himself "look like a monkey".

Asked about those memories, Klopp said: "It was not my best behaviour. Since then nothing happened any more, so it was my last time when I was a bit too excited.

"It was not nice sitting in the stand, getting all the comments, so I decided to watch the second half of the match from the groundsman's room - with a big picture of Diego Maradona on the wall."

Liverpool midfielder Georginio Wijnaldum was with Klopp at the pre-match press conference and praised team-mate Daniel Sturridge for his form this season, highlighting his work ethic in particular and saying he deserves an England recall.

The Holland international said: "I don't know what he did in his pre-season, but he was quite fit.

"He has shown us he is quite important and we've seen him playing in a way he hasn't before, dropping deep, defending. I think he deserves to be in the England squad."

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