Klopp names the Inter Milan player he is looking forward to facing

Joe Williams
Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp watches his players in training

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp reveals he is looking forward to facing Ivan Perisic when his side plays Inter Milan in the Champions League on Wednesday night.

Klopp takes his squad to Italy on the back of six successive victories, having in December become the first English side to win all of their Champions League group matches.

When asked which Inter Milan player he was looking forward to facing, Klopp told reporters: “That is Ivan Perisic. We worked together [at Borussia Dortmund] and won the double in Germany. I’m looking forward to seeing him.

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“That Nicolo Barella [suspension] is not able to play is not bad for us. He is a really good player and I like him a lot and he has all the things you want from a midfield player. He is aggressive, he is technical and he can run for ages.

“I think the replacement may be Arturo Vidal maybe, and that is experience at its best. He has played everywhere at the top level so I’m not sure if it’s an advantage for us that he will play instead of Barella. It is more important how we play.

“What kind of mood can you create in a game and what kind of mentality can you produce? It depends on the players but also on the team. It will be really interesting and if I wasn’t involved, I would definitely be watching it.”

New signing Luis Diaz has impressed in his first two matches for the club and Klopp claims he has never seen a player smile as much in training as Diaz.

Klopp added: “Luis is a top boy and a top class player which he has showed in his two appearances for us, as he didn’t play against Burnley.

“As with any new player, we have to get used to different things in the team and all the other players are fit, who know exactly what I want from them, so we give Luis a bit more time to adapt.

“His joy for football is so obvious and in training he cannot stop smiling. I have never had a player like this and I’m so happy to have him here.

“We expect a lot from him in the future and I have a good feeling it will be a really nice story for him at Liverpool.”