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Klopp: Liverpool players didn’t deserve hugs after Fulham stalemate

Klopp at Liverpool
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The newly-promoted side held Liverpool to a 2-2 draw at their home stadium.

Jurgen Klopp has criticized Liverpool players for their unimpressive performance during the Reds’ Premier League opener. 

A 2-2 draw saw Fulham get ahead twice as Klopp’s side failed to create enough momentum to beat their opponents. 

The German manager started the game by dropping Darwin Nunez from his lineup. However, he went on to score the Reds’ first equalizer in the second half.

Mohamed Salah saved Liverpool from defeat by converting a late penalty. But that wasn’t enough to make up for the English giants’ poor overall performance.

“The best thing about the game is the result. We get a point from a really bad game from my side,” Klopp told BT Sport.

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“Now it’s a question of ‘how can that happen?’ I said already to your colleagues that the attitude wasn’t right in the beginning. Then we wanted to fight back but it was not easy – the pitch was dry, stuff like this, and we played into their [hands].

“When we had a bit of direction then we ended up in front of their goal, and even when we were 1-0 down we had probably the bigger chances. 

“The result is fine. I don’t think we deserved more than that, but the performance is massively improvable.”

‘We can’t always hug players’

Asked about his half-time speech after Aleksandar Mitrović’s opener, Klopp responded: “We cannot always hug the boys. We do that usually when they deserve it.

“The first half, we started the game opposite to how we wanted to. We didn’t find direction, and everybody was under pressure. We couldn’t break the lines.

“There was a clear message before the game, that what we have to do is take risks. We lost balls, and each challenge they won, each chance, each shot, is big for them.

“We never had momentum. We could have won the game, we had the bigger chances, but that probably would have been a bit too much.”