Jurgen Klopp admitted his frustration with Liverpool’s performance in the 1-0 defeat to Salzburg on Wednesday, revealing that he didn’t see the match as a ‘friendly’.
The Reds deployed a shuffled starting XI with summer signings Darwin Nunez and Fabio Carvalho starting, going behind to Benjamin Sesko’s 31st-minute strike.
Heavy-hitters Mohamed Salah, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Virgil van Dijk were all introduced on the hour-mark but failed to find the breakthrough.
Analysing the game, Klopp revealed where Liverpool went wrong, highlighting some aggressive Salzburg defending and and their own ineffectiveness in front of goal, with Darwin Nunez often isolated up front.
“We were too open, we were too wide, we were not connected enough in moments when you lose the ball,” he told the club’s website. “It was not only the young players – all the boys can do much better.
“It doesn’t feel great but we take it and go from here.
“We had so many chances and obviously luck didn’t come with us. At least we got into the positions to finish it off but it’s just a shame we couldn’t do that today.
“No, for Salzburg it was definitely no friendly. For us not as well. Salzburg had these kind of harsh challenges, but they do really well; all respect to Salzburg, they do really well. Sometimes I didn’t like the challenges too much but it’s fine, nothing happened there I think. How I said, first half too many mistakes.
“We set the boys up and it’s all fine, they can do much better and they had good moments as well. But especially the first half, the majority of players have to get used to what we do. Darwin was much too often alone. Everybody dropped, everybody was involved in the build-up but too wide and we could only pass the ball to Darwin in the box.
“He had his moments and nearly scored, but he needs much more support around him. You keep other players busy that they cannot focus on him. So many things. Second half, imagine now Darwin would have been there in the box, that would have helped as well. It is like it is – doesn’t feel great, but we take it and go from here.”
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Liverpool are next in action on Saturday when they face Manchester City in the Community Shield
Klopp added: “We are all looking forward to the City game and hopefully we can get some silverware to get into the season all guns blazing.
“It will be a great test for us.”