Jurgen Klopp has revealed that failure to win the Champions League and Premier League at the end of last season ‘doesn’t hurt anymore’ in an in-depth interview.
The Reds came close to completing a historic quadruple last season, having won both the FA Cup and Carabao Cup, but were unable to overtake Manchester City on a dramatic final day of the Premier League season and were then beaten by Real Madrid in a rather turgid Champions League final.
Here’s what he had to say in his interview with ESPN.
On last season
“I’m very positive about the season and the things we did, of course. When you are that close, it would have been nice [to win everything], but it doesn’t hurt anymore.
“It hurt in the moment, that’s clear, when we came a bit short in the league and lost the Champions League final, but honestly, the next day [when Liverpool had a homecoming parade] showed us everything we needed to know, the people obviously. That’s what we do: we do it for the people and they obviously appreciate a lot what we did over the year.
“It was a spectacular season with an insane amount of points, an insane amount of games and all this kind of thing, so they are really very positive reflections.”
When asked about changes made to the Liverpool attack this summer – Sadio Mane was sold to Bayern and replaced by Darwin Nunez – Klopp stated that they were ‘necessary’ moves for the club:
“It is necessary. We didn’t only lose Sadio, we also lost Divock Origi and Takumi Minamino just from the playing squad last year. Some other players might leave as well, but we brought in Luis in the winter, Darwin now, Fabio [Carvalho] and Calvin [Ramsay].
“It is really exciting because the boys are fresh and full of excitement – big eyes – being together with us, so it just changes the dynamic in the group and it’s really necessary.
“I’m now in my seventh season and it’s important that we don’t just do the same thing again and again and again. We have to push ourselves to the next level and for that you always need a new input and that’s what we got.”
On Mohamed Salah contract
“Very important of course. It’s always like this. If it wouldn’t have happened, we would have had to deal with that, but I knew early that Mo’s wish was to stay and the club wanted him to stay. Then it’s just negotiations.
“If you do that in other parts of business out there, nobody is aware of it. You just realise at the moment when they are still together. But in football, we all do that in public and that’s why it felt, for the people, a bit nervy, but for us it was never like that.
“It was a very important signing for us. I always see it like this: if we had to sign him now from another club, wow, what a player we would get. But now we have him still here and that’s absolutely great. You see him here now and he is absolutely happy about the future with us, so yes, great news.”