Jürgen Klopp has told Liverpool to “stay cool” after going top of the Premier League and warned potential title rivals that his free-scoring team will improve as the season progresses.
Liverpool reached the Premier League summit for the first time since May 2014 with an emphatic 6-1 victory over Watford at Anfield. Arsenal’s 1-1 draw with Tottenham Hotspur in the north London derby earlier in the day had offered Klopp’s team the chance to leapfrog Manchester City, Chelsea and Arsène Wenger’s side, and they took it with another irrepressible attacking display.
Sadio Mané scored twice, while Philippe Coutinho, Emre Can, Roberto Firmino and Georginio Wijnaldum, with his first for the club, were all on the scoresheet for a Liverpool team that have had 13 different goalscorers in 14 matches this season. But their manager remained grounded.
“If somebody thinks being one point ahead after 11 match days is a big sign for the rest of the season then I can’t help this person,” said Klopp. “We stay cool. It’s the best position I can imagine but nothing else has happened. We knew that Arsenal drew against Tottenham but we didn’t speak one word before the game about the possibility of being top of the table. The only thing you can do is work and stay concentrated. A lot of different things could happen in the next few weeks and months, how positive they are is up to us.
“There’s no pressure after 11 match days, absolutely no pressure at all. We saw Chelsea yesterday – quite impressive. Manchester City playing Barcelona – quite impressive. Man United – never write them off. Tottenham – a really good side. There are a lot of really good teams around. You can play a really good season but finish fifth or sixth and nobody would be really happy.
“Stay cool, take the things like they are, play your best, win games, that’s the only thing we can do. When I came here I asked for time and patience and belief and after 11 match days everyone’s asking for guarantees that are not there. The only thing we have for sure is a pretty good football team. We are still early in our development and a lot of things can be improved.”
Watford had kept three clean sheets before their arrival at Anfield but their defence was ravaged and Heurelho Gomes departed with his right knee in a brace. The 35-year-old goalkeeper will have a scan in the next few days.
“In my opinion you can lose against a team like Liverpool at their home but I’m not happy to lose in this way,” said their manager, Walter Mazzarri. “We have to work tactically and psychologically to play against a team like this again. We had too many players not on form but also congratulations to Liverpool. From the teams we’ve played there’s no doubt they are the team I’m most impressed with. If they continue like this they are number one in my list for winning the Premier League from the teams we’ve played against.”