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Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp vote of confidence for Simon Mignolet

Published 19/12/2015

Jurgen Klopp wants Liverpool goalkeeper Simon Mignolet, right, to keep coming for crosses
Jurgen Klopp wants Liverpool goalkeeper Simon Mignolet, right, to keep coming for crosses

Jurgen Klopp denied the goals Liverpool conceded against West Brom showed they have a problem defending set-pieces.

The Reds needed a very late Divock Origi strike to salvage a 2-2 stalemate at Anfield last weekend after Craig Dawson and Jonas Olsson had both scored from corners for Albion.

Klopp was quick to defend goalkeeper Simon Mignolet, who missed his punch to allow Dawson to head in, and protested Olsson's goal should have been disallowed.

The German insisted no pattern could be discerned from the goals, saying: " They are all different. Of course it's a situation. Maybe it could be the next misunderstanding.

"Simon came out of his goal and wanted to reach the ball and that's how I work. You can say that if the goalkeeper comes out he has to take the ball, and he didn't. But he came out because I said he should.

"Not in this situation but in general. Because I think as a goalkeeper you have to try to help in the six-yard box as much as you can. That's what he tried and if you try sometimes you miss, that's all. It's not about quality, or something else, it's only this situation.

"The second goal, nobody spoke about things like this after the game because we defend bad set-plays, but it was a foul and it was offside.

"Everybody spoke about Jurgen Klopp, Tony Pulis, celebrating with fans, whatever, nobody spoke about this. If it's a foul and it's offside, how can I tell my team to defend it better? We have to defend so that nobody can easily make a goal. That's it.

"We know about this but in this special game, they were two different situations to all the other things. Usually we are more stable in situations like this.

"We cannot be taller but we saw all the situations, we saw that some teams change their formations against us because of our kind of defending. We try to change now again something to be better prepared for situations like this."

Klopp, meanwhile, is confident he can get the best out of striker Christian Benteke.

The Belgium international swapped Aston Villa for Anfield in the summer after Liverpool shelled out £32.5million but has come in for criticism for his performances.

Klopp insisted it was natural that Benteke, who has netted five goals for Liverpool, would take time to feel totally comfortable in the side

He said: "As a striker you always want to have five or six games in a row. At Aston Villa, I think when he was fit he played. Everything is different.

"I have time to work. He played very good games for us, he made brilliant goals for us, so that's not a problem.

"I'm not sure anybody at Aston Villa saw the best Christian Benteke, so we have to work on it. He's young enough to develop and that's what we do."

On Sunday, Liverpool travel to Watford, who have been one of the surprise packages of the season and went into the weekend in seventh place in the Premier League table.

But Klopp does not think it should be too much of a shock how well Quique Sanchez Flores' side are doing.

He said: "I don't think it's a big surprise, it's how football is.

"If you have a good team, of course you need good players, but if these players together are a really good team, if you have a good plan like they have and if you play football like they do, then it's not easy but it's possible to be more successful than everybody expects. And if the expectations are not too high, then it's easier to go over them.

"But we go there not to clap our hands because of their season because we want to fight for the points."

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