Jürgen Klopp says Liverpool ‘should not go nuts’ despite win over Tottenham

• Klopp: team have finally started 2017 but Chelsea are now too far ahead
• Liverpool deserved result, says Spurs manager Mauricio Pochettino

Jürgen Klopp congratulated his Liverpool players on making a belated start to 2017 but claimed he was no longer interested in the title race because Chelsea are too far ahead.

“We finally started 2017 tonight but we should not go nuts immediately,” the Liverpool manager said after the 2-0 victory against Tottenham. “What would you think about me now if I said I think we can catch Chelsea?” he asked rhetorically. “Crazy? Ambitious? Maybe you can believe I am not too interested in that.

“Chelsea do not look at the moment as if they are going to struggle, but if they do someone could still catch them. What we must do now is to win as many of our games as possible.”

Liverpool should find that easier now that Sadio Mané is back from the Africa Cup of Nations. The winger was the pick of Liverpool’s attacking midfield against Spurs with two first‑half goals in as many minutes. “He could have had more,” Klopp said. “Of course we missed him in January, anyone would, but that’s only part of the truth. We knew we had to show a reaction today, we knew we had to show fight, and we did, right from the start.

“Everyone was waiting for a game like this. Sadio was fantastic, but so were Adam Lallana and Roberto Firmino, still sprinting after 90 minutes. Now we have shown what we can still do, we have to use the rest of the season well and maximise our position.”

Mauricio Pochettino could not explain the slow start that left his team two goals down midway through the first half. “We began badly and we had a very good team in front if us,” the Tottenham manager said. “You cannot come to a place like this and only start to play when you are two goals down.

“We did have one or two chances at 2-0 but to be honest we didn’t deserve to take too much from the game . We were poor, we lacked aggression. Liverpool deserve all the credit. The truth is they played much better than we did.”

Spurs remain second, though Chelsea could open up a 12-point lead with a win at Burnley. “That gap is already huge, it will be difficult for anyone to catch Chelsea,” Pochettino said. “Liverpool are only a point behind us and now they have a fortnight off to prepare for their next game. We must play in the Europa League and the FA Cup before we get back to the league.”


Paul Wilson at Anfield

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