Tuesday 24 April 2018

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp wants more tactical flexibility ahead of Champions League return

Jürgen Klopp wants to be able to be more tactically flexible in the new season. Getty
Jürgen Klopp wants to be able to be more tactically flexible in the new season. Getty

Mark Critchley

Jürgen Klopp hopes his Liverpool side become more tactically flexible over the course of pre-season as they prepare to fight on both domestic and European fronts next term.

Klopp’s players begin their preparations for the new season next week, with eight friendlies against a varied set of opponents scheduled in July and early August.

Liverpool will then travel to Vicarage Road to face Marco Silva’s Watford on the Premier League's opening weekend, with that meeting followed by the first leg of a crucial Champions League qualifying tie.

When asked what he would like to see from his squad before those first competitive fixtures, Klopp told the club’s official website: “Tactically-wise, getting more flexible – depending who is there and when – and introducing different systems.

“[In 2015-16], we played most of the time kind of 4-2-3-1, [in 2016-17] most of the time 4-3-3 or 4-5-1. In our opinion, it fitted best to the players we had.

“I’m not sure which way we have to play next year, there will be a few different ones. And we’ll prepare for European football also, so we need a bigger squad of course. We’ll be good. I’m looking forward to it.”

Klopp’s admission that he will need a bigger squad of players at his disposal for the new campaign comes as Liverpool attempt to prise midfielder Naby Keita from RB Leipzig.

It is understood that Keita, who starred as newly-promoted Leipzig finished runners-up in the Bundesliga last season, would cost Liverpool at least £70m, a club record transfer fee.

Liverpool completed the signing of Roma winger Mohamed Salah for €39m (£33.8m) last week in a deal that fell just short of the club’s current record purchase, the £35m paid for Andy Carroll in 2011.

Independent News Service

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