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Sunday 4 December 2016

Klopp: Trust me to win

Liverpool boss insists players must follow gameplan to see off City in Wembley final

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp. Photo: Reuters
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp. Photo: Reuters
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp insists he has the experience to beat Manchester City in tomorrow’s League Cup final at Wembley. Photo: PA

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp will tell his players to trust his gameplan as he knows how to win trophies.

Manchester City are the favourites for tomorrow's League Cup final but being the unfancied side has never stopped Klopp in the past and it will not at Wembley.

The 48-year-old has won the German Super Cup twice and the DFB-Pokal (German Cup) once in addition to his two Bundesliga titles with Borussia Dortmund, who he also led to the 2013 Champions League final.

Former Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard, writing in his column for the Daily Telegraph, said Klopp would be the difference in the League Cup final.

And the Reds boss agreed with the LA Galaxy midfielder.

"Thank you Stevie, I gave him £100 for this!" he joked.

"Stevie so often in his life made the right decisions and said the right things so hopefully this is the truth too.

Clear

"I am not sure I am the difference but I know the way. There is absolutely no reason at this moment to have a doubt.

"I have to show it as clear as possible so there is no misunderstanding between my mouth and the ears of the players.

"We do this job in professional football, we only want to win things: titles, cups, whatever.

"A lot of managers work their whole lives and can be really successful but have never the chance to win something. Now everything is possible."

Liverpool's last piece of silverware came in this competition four years ago with a penalty shoot-out victory over Cardiff.

It is their only trophy in nearly a decade and the expectation on Klopp to change that was high from the moment he was appointed as Brendan Rodgers' successor in October.

For the players - of whom only Jordan Henderson, Martin Skrtel and Jose Enrique remain of the side who won at Wembley as midfielder Lucas Leiva was then injured - there is now huge pressure to start delivering.

Klopp will pass on his words of wisdom on how to deal with that but his main plan is to make sure they feel confident enough to put in the sort of performance they have shown only glimpses of this season.

"I can say 'If you want to help me I know'. It is not important what I say today because it will not change the game," he added.

Pressure

"I know both situations after the final, winning and losing, so the only thing I can say is nothing is decided.

"It is only important we do our best performance which is possible in this game.

"It is not to force with a sentence I could say in the meeting. Don't worry, I will find the right words for them to go out with a good mood in this game with 100 per cent self-belief.

"Hopefully it is not the biggest match of their whole life for Liverpool and it is the first try.

"In my opinion it is only the first try, not the last one, so you cannot - and should not - go into a game thinking 'This is the last chance of my life', as that is a big pressure.

"They don't have to think about this game or deal with the pressure around this game.

"You can dream, that is no problem, but you have to stop dreaming at the first whistle otherwise you wake up in the middle of the game.

"We will have to think about a real good plan for this game, where we want to do what and explain to the players why and then let's do it."

Liverpool hammered City 4-1 at the Etihad Stadium in November but Klopp does not believe it will have any bearing on the final.

"It is not that you can perform like this every day," he said.

"It was a really good game and we used this game for a lot of analysis to know what is possible with the things we did.

"We will keep it in our mind until we get a better one (idea).

"I am not sure we can avoid every chance of Man City but we will get chances ourselves and to use them is one of the key things to do."

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