'It’s a big question' - Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp baffled as his 'fab four' fluff their lines
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp admitted he was confused as his attack-minded side missed a host of chances in a 1-1 draw against Spartak Moscow in the Champions League.
Philippe Coutinho’s fine first half goal was enough to secure a point for Liverpool in Russia, but Klopp’s side wasted a succession of opportunities to score a winner on a night when they had 16 efforts at goal.
Klopp started with all four of his star forwards Sadio Mane, Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino and Coutinho for the first time this season, but the second goal they craved did not arrive despite the Reds creating a host of clear cut chances.
The draw leaves Liverpool two points behind Group E leaders Sevilla after they beat Maribor 3-0, with Klopp cutting a frustrated figure as he faced the media.
“In this moment we are not the most lucky team in world football and things are not going easy for us, but we have to be more clinical,” stated Klopp. “It’s a crazy game having that many chances and only scoring one time. It feels average but it is how it is.
“We created a lot of chances against a defence oriented team and didn’t give too many chances away for them. The free-kick they scored with was not a foul, so it is difficult to defend this and then it was a brilliant free-kick.
“We made our equaliser and then had four or five 100 per-cent chances and then it is disappointing not to win.
“The only target you have is to go through the group stages and now we know more about two of our opponents. Both games we could have won, but we didn’t and now we move on.
"Why we couldn’t score (a second goal) is a really good question, it’s a big question.
"It was because of being a little bit of being unlucky in one situation, good goalkeeper saves, I saw a lot of good saves from both goalkeepers, and wrong decisions in the decisive moment, that’s how football is.
"The only way you can change it is really to do it again, do it again and do it again - and that’s what we will do. Stay cool, carry on, work hard and you will succeed in the end."
Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson echoed his manager’s frustrations, as he gave this reaction to BT Sport.
“It’s disappointing. We controlled the game from start to finish so we should win it comfortably,” he said. “We have got to make sure we don’t give goals away first and foremost.
“On another day it could have been three or four. The performance was decent but not enough to win the game. I thought we defended well for the majority of the game, but we have to finish the game off and be more ruthless.
“We’ve got to make sure we don’t give goals away first and foremost. Worst case scenario it should be 1-0. The way we control the game, the chances we have we should have won the game.”