Jürgen Klopp believes “something is growing” at Liverpool but that it is too early to label his new-look team mentality monsters.
Liverpool produced another comeback to open their Europa League campaign with victory against the Austrian side Lask on Thursday, and host West Ham on Sunday seeking a sixth successive win in all competitions. Klopp’s team have come from behind to win four of their six matches this season. Although Klopp accepts that is an encouraging sign of Liverpool’s spirit, the man who coined the phrase “mentality monsters” to describe his Premier League and Champions League winners insists his current team do not compare yet.
The Liverpool manager said: “When I said that phrase at that time, it was not that I planned that way. I just remember watching a game and thinking: ‘Oh my God, how did they come back?’ Now we have just changed a few things and turned games around. Staying in a game is a duty and we did that so far, which is why we have turned situations. Mentality? That is something we will create. What we have now is a mood. This is a spirit we have created because the boys really like playing with each other. It is a close group. It is early.
“I am really happy with a lot of things. It was not long ago I was being asked about us being 1-0 down, 1-0 down, 1-0 down. I understand that this may come up again some time but this feels completely different. Something is growing but I have no clue how big it will grow.”
Klopp made 11 changes in Austria and was able to bring on players of the calibre of Mohamed Salah, Dominik Szoboszlai and Alexis Mac Allister in the 3-1 win. As well as professing to love his new-look squad, Klopp said he was enamoured of the depth at his disposal this season.
“Some people maybe thought it was too much but everyone deserved to play for what they have shown in pre-season and in training,” Klopp said of his selection against Lask. “Will I do this in every [Europa League] game? Probably not. But we can mix it in a different way. For a squad that is still without Thiago [Alcântara], Trent [Alexander-Arnold] and Conor Bradley we can still change 11 times. It’s absolutely crazy. I love the squad and I love the depth.
“If we have luck – and by luck I mean everyone stays healthy – and we have 23 players at this level then we can react in all the games we have and we should always have a really good team on the pitch. I like that a lot. And of course, good results help bring everyone closer together. That is always the case.”