Jurgen Klopp has discussed where he feels Liverpool’s season has faltered and believes his players should follow Chelsea’s example.
The Reds’ fortunes nosedived after the turn of the year, with last Saturday’s win over Tottenham being their first Premier League victory of 2017.
Since the New Year, Klopp’s side have also suffered cup exits, thanks to home defeats to Southampton in the EFL Cup semi-final and Wolves in the FA Cup.
Klopp has previously discussed his desire to see a winter break implemented in English football, and the manager admits his side has looked jaded.
“December-January,” Klopp responded when asked what was the biggest lesson he learned during Liverpool’s poor run.
When asked what the most important lesson he learned from Liverpool’s poor form was, Klopp said: “December-January.
“Not even Chelsea came through without no problems but they were able to play the same team all the time.
“They left the EFL Cup when, before it started? [fourth round] I don’t remember them playing one game in that competition. ‘Get rid of this.’
“I spoke to Antonio Conte for a long time at Anfield, maybe 25 minutes, and he mentioned it but said they could play the same 13-14 players all the time. That is the big difference.
“In December we missed players and did not have the best schedule. You could see the difference physically.”
Liverpool now sit 11 points behind leaders Chelsea but Klopp says some of the factors behind their slump were beyond their control.
“We could have had two, three or four points more. With two points more instead of an offside goal for Man Utd, and I don’t want to make a story of it, then we are in the same situation but with 51 points. Only because of one decision and the games staying the same.
“Hull – first half really not good, Southampton – not good enough, Chelsea – good, United – good, Swansea – silly but not bad, we played pretty good until we stopped playing. We are not used to being a top team, maybe we have to be. We are not clever like Chelsea who will be 2-0 up and just finish a game.”
“We could have had two, three or four points more. We are not used to being a top team, maybe we have to be. We are not clever like Chelsea who will be 2-0 up and just finish a game.”