Klopp hints at costly Thiago ‘rhythm’ error in Liverpool exit

Date published: Thursday 15th April 2021 8:59 - Will Ford

Thiago Liverpool

Jurgen Klopp has admitted to a tactical mistake as Liverpool were knocked out of the Champions League on Wednesday, with his side “trying too hard” in the second half.

Klopp brought on Thiago Alcantara and Diogo Jota after the break before adding Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Xherdan Shaqiri later on.

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The Liverpool boss thought his side were attempting to force the issue too much after the break, though, as they went in search of the two goals that would take them through.

“Second half we made the changes and the timing was maybe not right,” he added. “We wanted fresh legs but we lost a bit of rhythm in these moments, we tried a bit too hard.

“In the beginning we didn’t try in these moments to pass the ball around their box. We needed the width.

“Tonight it was OK, but we are out anyway. We love this competition and it is for different reasons very important for this club.”

The hosts could not fashion another of their famous European comebacks as despite registering 15 shots they managed just four on target and Real goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois was barely tested.

But what really cost them was their performance in the Spanish capital for last week’s first leg when their opening 45 minutes was woeful and led to them losing 3-1.

“We started the game really well. We didn’t lose the tie tonight, we lost the game in Madrid, it was clear,” he said.

“If we had gone 1-0 up it would have been a different game but because of the experience of Real Madrid and their situation we had to chase the game and they controlled the game and had counter-attacking chances themselves.

“With two good performances we would have had a better chance.”

Liverpool created enough chances but they were just not clinical enough in front of goal, a failing which has cost them already this season.

“It was uncomfortable for Madrid, we were good, we were aggressive, we played some really good stuff, had massive chances in the beginning of the game,” he added.

“If we used one of them, it opens up. They had already struggles, it would have increased that.

“It is a little bit ourselves this year because we had ridiculous games here we should have won, not tonight but in the Premier League, where we just didn’t finish.

“Many times Mo Salah finished these type of things. We had many situations and we could have created more because the football we made was better.”

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