Sport

‘No machine can have defended us this night’: Jurgen Klopp hails Liverpool forwards after Atalanta rout

Liverpool sent out an ominous warning to the rest of the Champions League contenders on Tuesday night after winning 5-0 at Atalanta.

The Italian side reached the quarter-final stage last season and were within a minute or two of knocking out eventual finalists PSG, but they had no answer to the Reds’ non-stop attacking intent in Bergamo.

Jurgen Klopp’s side scored early on and were five up before the hour mark, with Diogo Jota netting three and one goal scored apiece by Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane.

Speaking to BT Sport after the game, the manager said the entire side put in a near-perfect shift to keep out the Serie A side, who have been noted over the last 12 months for their own free-scoring form.

“It was the performance we needed tonight. The boys played an incredible game,” he said.

“Front line [was] attacking and defending, midfield organisation and desire, [a] top, top level. Last line, pushing up, knowing the threat the forwards can cause. [Our] goalie [Alisson Becker] had to make three world-class saves so everyone was involved.

“I don’t want to talk about tactics – no system could have defended us tonight against Sadio, Mo and Jota. It’s just about how we played.”

With the Reds set to next face domestic rivals Manchester City, Klopp says the emphasis will be on recovering from their Champions League exertions – then going at full-tilt, regardless of the upcoming international break.

“My players, 90 per cent of them have three games in the internationals. We will see, we have to recover and we will need that. Then we’ll see who is available. We have to make sure we are ready for that [game].”

Liverpool are five points clear of City, who have a game in hand, and who also won their Champions League match on Tuesday night – 3-0 at home to Olympiacos.

Read more

Jota lauds ‘world class’ Salah and Mane after fantastic hat-trick

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