Klopp explains ‘wow’ moment from Liverpool’s loss against Real Madrid
In pictures: Real Madrid v Liverpool
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Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp has singled out Alisson for praise following his side’s defeat to Real Madrid in the Champions League with two ‘wow’ saves keeping them in the tie. The German conceded his team did not do enough across the two legs with the right club going through.
Liverpool fell to a 1-0 defeat on the night courtesy of a 78th-minute Karim Benzema tap-in. The real damage was inflicted in the first leg with a 5-2 loss at Anfield, leaving the Reds with no real chance in the return tie at the Bernabeu.
Klopp went bold with his team selection as Cody Gakpo, Mohamed Salah, Darwin Nunez and Diogo Jota all started, leaving James Milner and Fabinho as the central midfield pairing. However, it was not enough as the Real defence stood firm, offering very few opportunities to the Reds’ frontline.
Madrid created the better chances with Alisson making big saves to keep them in the tie, with Klopp singling his keeper out for praise after the match.
“Being 5-2 down is not a great result if you want to got through,” he told BT Sport. “You need to have a special performance and we couldn’t do that tonight. Real Madrid had the best chances, Alisson made two fantastic saves, I mean wow! In the end, the goal is a scrappy one but that is obviously not decisive anymore”.
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Klopp was keen to lavish praise upon the victors as he conceded the right team had gone through based on the performance over the two legs.
“The right team went through, we have to admit that,” he explained. “Knockout stages are like this. It’s not what we wanted but it’s what we got.
“You need moments in a game like this, if we scored in the first half it could have given us the spark but this is hypothetical. They were the better team in three halves of this tie and that’s how you go through.
“If we draw at home and play like we did tonight, we probably go out as well. We cannot come here and hope that we get something. We prepared for a special performance tonight but it didn’t happen.
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“Nobody thinks ‘how could Liverpool go out’ and that’s probably the best sign that the right team went through and that’s how it is in the knockout stage.”
Liverpool’s full focus will now switch to the Premier League with the Merseysiders facing a tough battle to get back into the Champions League next season. The club currently sit sixth in the division and face the unenviable task of Manchester City at the Etihad in their next runout.
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