A convincing win for Liverpool in a game they could not afford to lose.
For Klopp the game was “Fantastic, but difficult.”
“The start was not that good – we gave away easy balls.”
Klopp gives a tactical reason for the challenges of the first half.
“With our new system, we played the diamond, so our second post was completely free.”
Half-time provides Klopp with the opportunity to show the players “video analysis of 2 to 3 things” so they can understand the need to fill up the centre when playing with two wide strikers.
Klopp does though deflect praise for the impact of this decision, “It is not about the system, it is how the players use it.”
The rest of his interview is dedicated to managing expectation for the Middlesbrough game.
It is “One more game, one more time. We have a normal week. Recovery, preparation, we go against Middlesborough,”
Klopp uses Antithesis, putting together two opposite ideas in a sentence to achieve a contrasting effect:
“Middlesborough have nothing to lose, but we have everything to win”
Klopp’s focus is only on Liverpool.
“Counting points before you have them is really silly.”
“We will prepare ourselves and try to do our best.”
Leadership communication lesson
When to publicly take credit for a result is a challenge for many leaders. Take no credit and you may be unpleasantly surprised that others will take the same view. Take credit too publicly and you risk alienating the team you are dependent on. Klopp’s approach can be usefully adopted. When talking about success, look for a narrative that places your decisions at its heart, but focus on the excellence of your people. This will reassure your stakeholders and flatter your people.