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Klopp doff hat for free-scoring Manchester City

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Liverpool’s German manager Jurgen Klopp (L) gestures to Liverpool’s Senegalese striker Sadio Mane (R) on the pitch after the English Premier League football match between Chelsea and Liverpool at Stamford Bridge in London on September 22, 2019. – Liverpool won the game 2-1. (Photo by OLLY GREENWOOD / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE. No use with unauthorized audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or ‘live’ services. Online in-match use limited to 120 images. An additional 40 images may be used in extra time. No video emulation. Social media in-match use limited to 120 images. An additional 40 images may be used in extra time. No use in betting publications, games or single club/league/player publications. /

Jurgen Klopp accepted Manchester City make winning look easy after Liverpool’s battling 2-1 victory at Chelsea, which came a day after the Premier League champions hammered Watford 8-0.

The Reds enjoyed a straightforward first half at Stamford Bridge, taking the lead through Trent Alexander-Arnold’s powerful 20-yard strike and doubling their lead when Roberto Firmino crashed in a close-range header.

Chelsea slowly grew into the game and N’Golo Kante’s superb second-half solo effort gave them hope of a point before Michy Batshuayi and Mason Mount missed late chances to equalise.

After watching his side claim a 15th consecutive Premier League victory, Klopp hailed Liverpool’s determination while tipping his hat to their free-scoring title rivals.

When asked about his side’s spectacular run of form, Klopp told Sky Sports: “It’s exceptional but we have to keep on going, we don’t really think about it.

“We don’t have to try to make any series longer. We fight for each yard, for each ball. From time to time we score, that helps to win the games but it’s always really hard work for us.

“It’s completely normal that you come under pressure but we defended well. That’s how the Premier League is: if you don’t finish the game then it’s open until the end.

“It never looks as easy as for City yesterday – they did it brilliantly, it was unbelievable – we have not had these games yet so we have to really work for it. The boys are ready for that.”

Liverpool’s goals at Chelsea both came from set-piece situations, Mohamed Salah rolling a free-kick to Alexander-Arnold for the opener and another dead ball allowing Andy Robertson to deliver an incisive cross for Firmino to get the second.

Klopp could not hide his satisfaction after work on the training ground bore fruit in a crucial match, while he was unperturbed by Chelsea’s late pressure.

“[It was] a really good performance, with passionate defending in the second half,” said Klopp.

“It was a good game. Two good sides. We were in control in the first half and we scored two wonderful goals after set-pieces.

“We work on set pieces. All the things we do in training I love to see on the pitch.

“Big fight from everybody. You can never win at Chelsea without putting a proper shift in and we did that today so I’m really happy.”


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