Klopp urges Liverpool to ignore past pain ahead of Chelsea game
Liverpool do not need any reminders of a 2-0 defeat by Chelsea that effectively ended their Premier League title hopes in the 2013-14 campaign, manager Juergen Klopp said on Friday.
Former skipper Steven Gerrard famously slipped and lost possession five years ago, allowing Demba Ba to score as Chelsea dented Liverpool’s title push with a famous victory at Anfield in a season when Manchester City ended up champions.
“I’m not sure that’s in anyone’s mind. You can tell all the fans out there to ignore it,” Klopp told a news conference ahead of Sunday’s home clash with Chelsea.
“It’s all about the game on Sunday. Only the colours and the names are the same pretty much. Anyone who wants to talk to any of my players about what happened years ago – don’t do it.
“We have to be positive and front-footed, (it’s) how we’ve done it for the whole season.”
Leaders Liverpool have 82 points, two more than City in second, although Pep Guardiola’s team have a game in hand.
Klopp said the team and fans had to believe if they are to end a 29-year drought for a league title.
“We are trying to keep this dream alive and at the moment it’s all good. But Chelsea are a really difficult team and they are in a good moment,” Klopp added.
“Our previous form means nothing this season. They want three points and we have a job to do. But we try to use the fan power and give them a boost by things we do on the pitch.
“I feel the positive energy (from the fans). It’s a massive change from surprise – we’re up there, getting used to it and getting more confident.”
REUTERS/Reporting by Shrivathsa Sridhar in Bengaluru, editing by Pritha Sarkar