Klopp delighted with Liverpool comeback at 'aggressive' Burnley
Jurgen Klopp was thrilled with Liverpool's comeback win away to an "aggressive" Burnley that moved his side back to within two points of Premier League leaders Manchester City.
Jack Cork's scrambled opener gave the Clarets the lead at a wet Turf Moor on Wednesday but 15 minutes later Liverpool were in front thanks to James Milner and substitute striker Roberto Firmino.
Xherdan Shaqiri added a third in stoppage time to ensure Liverpool moved to 39 points from 15 league games, a club record, but Klopp was frustrated by what he deemed an overly physical Burnley approach.
Joe Gomez was taken off on a stretcher midway through the first half after sliding into the advertising hoardings following a strong tackle from Ben Mee, with Phil Bardsley also putting in a number of hefty challenges.
"They wanted to be aggressive," Klopp told a news conference. "Aggression is a part of football. You try something, and you need someone to say 'be careful'.
"There were a lot of situations, challenges. There was nothing to say 'wow, too much' - they were normal challenges. But with six or seven yards and then [slide], these times are over. They are over.
"We all want to win football games, and there are different ways of doing it. Somebody has to tell you to stop doing it, make two more steps and make a normal challenge. Don't go five yards before the player, because the grass is wet, and take any risk [out of the tackle].
"It's not intentional, but these are the situations. The boy with the ball is a bit unlucky because what can happen is what happened to Joe Gomez. I think the referee has to make sure that things like this don't happen constantly. It's not how it should be. Let's play football."
— Simon Mignolet (@SMignolet) December 5, 2018
Responding to Klopp's criticism of Burnley's strong tackling Sean Dyche defended his team, who have now lost six of their last seven matches in the Premier League.
"I thought there were some excellent challenges tonight," he told reporters. "When you think about real challenges, I thought some of the timing of the challenges were superb.
"That's part of that front-foot mentality. You've got to win the ball, you've got to challenge against these boys. You've got to put a marker on the game - not only with good tackles, but also with good play. I thought we were effective. We mixed it. Not effective enough, don't get me wrong.
"But we've got to get back to being 'us'. We've got to get back to the consistency of being 'us'. The shape was really good tonight, the energy and endeavour. And also the will to win because that was there right the way through the last breath."
What it all means... pic.twitter.com/5zDgyqeBfq
— Premier League (@premierleague) December 5, 2018
Klopp made seven changes from Liverpool's last-gasp Merseyside derby win at home to Everton with Naby Keita among the new faces to impress, although Shaqiri's performance did not impress the German.
"Even in the first half when Naby had the ball something changed a bit," Klopp added. "To be honest I don't criticise or blame anybody, but we all know Shaq can play much better, turn and use the space, stuff like that.
"The only one who tried to run in behind was Milly, and Naby with the ball. Hendo [Jordan Henderson] shouldn't be involved in that, he had to protect the runners.
"Naby made all the difference, I think his blocked shot was the biggest chance we had in the first half. It looked like a proper chance. Second half, one-two with Mo [Salah], good finish, bit lucky for Burnley.
"I was shouting that we had to use Naby. We played long balls, big switch, and Naby was constantly overlooked. He was good."