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Jurgen Klopp refusing to blame his Liverpool players for poor run of form

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp insists he does not blame the players for the disappointing drop off in results which has left the defending champions in a battle for the top four.

A return of just nine points – and two wins – from a possible 33 since thrashing Crystal Palace 7-0 on December 19 has seen the Reds fall from first to sixth.

With their title defence in tatters Liverpool are left with a significant challenge just to secure Champions League qualification but Klopp said “careers don’t end after this season”.

“We will try everything this season but there are so many things we can learn from it,” he said.

“We can really learn a lot of things about what we did right even when the whole world thought it was wrong, and what we did wrong, even when people didn’t realise it.

“And while we are doing that we go through this (tough period) but our football lives – our career – doesn’t end after this season.

“I don’t go and put the finger on my players and blame them for the situation – I don’t do that.

“We are all responsible for it, I am mainly responsible for it. What we go through now, we have to sort problems now, immediately, and in the long term we can get the benefit of what we are going through in the moment.

“It’s not cool but there are much worse things out there than the situation we are in as a football club.”

Despite the criticism which has come their way, Klopp insists it has not adversely affected the training ground environment.

“The atmosphere is really good every morning when you come in, but it’s not the boys are making massive jokes first thing and everybody is laughing like crazy. It’s not like this,” he added ahead of what is a must-win game at bottom side Sheffield United.

“The atmosphere is about trust – it is that we trust each other, that we like each other, that we respect each other, that we do these kind of things and we create a situation that we always find a way for ourselves to become positive again for the next game, optimistic about the next game.

“So yes, going into the game that is a massive challenge, and that is exactly what we do – what we do together.

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp throws his arms wide on the touchline
Jurgen Klopp insists he is ready to do the dirty work to get things back on track (Phil Noble/PA)

“Maybe the important message even in this moment is we are still Liverpool and that is what we feel.

“We are Liverpool when we win 20 games in a row or whatever and don’t lose, and not when we lose matches? No, we are still Liverpool.

“That, of course, gives me energy, so I am not here only for the big celebrations, I am here for the work.

“And if it is the dirty work, the hard work, no problem.”

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