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Klopp admits passions ruled after derby draw

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Liverpool’s manager Jurgen Klopp said he was just offering a genuine response after a tetchy television interview © AFP/File / Paul ELLIS

LONDON, United Kingdom, Dec 12Jurgen Klopp admitted on Tuesday that he got caught up in the heat of the moment after Liverpool conceded a late penalty to draw at home with Everton.

The Liverpool boss is known for his animated reactions but his behaviour came under extra scrutiny after a tetchy television interview minutes after Everton secured a 1-1 draw at Anfield on Sunday with a spot-kick he felt should not have been given.

Klopp’s cantankerous mood did not improve in his press conference later when his request for a show of hands from those who disagreed with him was met with the majority of the room responding.

However, the German insists he was just offering a genuine response and has no regrets about how it played out.

“I would give the same interview now,” he said. “The information I had to give would be the same but now I am completely relaxed, but it was five minutes after the game and I was not relaxed.”

“It is nothing. I didn’t use any words I have to take back. I don’t like it but I am pretty sure I cannot change it because I felt like this in this moment and I am not an actor. I cannot act differently.”

Klopp’s team selection — with Philippe Coutinho and Roberto Firmino on the bench — came under scrutiny after Everton claimed a point, but he has been rotating his players for several weeks to keep them fresh during a busy period.

Last year Liverpool fell apart in January, winning just one FA Cup game, as injuries scuppered an unlikely title bid. With Champions League football to contend with this season, Klopp is trying to avoid a repeat scenario.

So far he has made 59 changes to his starting 11 this season. Only Manchester United in 2002 have made more in Premier League history at this stage of the campaign.

“If we had the squad last year we would have done it last year,” said Klopp, set to make more changes for the visit of West Brom on Wednesday.

“You cannot play the same 11 players all the time until four are injured and then you hope the other four who come in — who are quality but have no rhythm — will perform for you.

“That is not likely.”

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