Jurgen Klopp admits that Liverpool’s ‘inexperience’ cost them in their first leg of the Europa League semi-final against Villarreal.
A second-half stoppage-time winner from Adrian Lopez finally broke Liverpool’s resolve in Spain, with the Reds now needing to overhaul the deficit next week at Anfield.
Liverpool had their chances throughout Thursday evening, with Roberto Firmino hitting the post, but the hosts launched a late counter-attack, culminating in Denis Suarez’s centre being converted by Lopez.
Speaking after the game, Klopp – who Matt Stead feels made a mistake – felt his side had a mixed game, but he was “pleased” overall.
“I am pleased with the performance, a lot of parts we did really well,” he said. “Villarreal are a good side but Liverpool are a good side too.
“After controlling a game like this in most parts of the game a 92nd-minute counter-attack it sounds like it is – not too good and everyone knows it and it should not happen.
“I’ve seen some unbelievable mistakes but I don’t think about things like this. It happens. It was not too smart. There are lot of things we could ask but it makes no sense.
“It is not a moment for disappointment. If the players want to be angry for 10 minutes then do it and move on.
“With the help of Anfield we can do it – but please don’t compare with Dortmund.”
Liverpool had 14 shots to Villarreal’s nine, and posed more of an attacking threat throughout. Klopp added: “We had this great moment with Alberto [Moreno] and a header from Christian [Benteke].
“Maybe the youth (inexperience) came through. Until then it was really a professional performance.
“Things are possible with 1-0, it is not the biggest result in the world. Villarreal know a lot more about us and they will respect us.
“Now we have to find solutions to a few things but I saw we are in a good way. I saw a lot of things that show we can.”