PREMIER - Liverpool boss Klopp: "Now we need total commitment from everyone"
Ahead of facing Steven Gerrard's Aston Villa, Liverpool manager, Jurgen Klopp, stated:
“We too are in a good moment, but we are in it because our players avoid distraction and keep tunnel vision on performance in the next game only. Tuesday night in Milan was very pleasing and to progress through such a tough group with a 100 per cent record made me very proud of my players. But it was evident after how quickly the team drew a line. We know we cannot take any of that through with us when the knockout stages start, so we don’t dwell.
We are satisfied that we achieved a target of ours – qualification to the next stage – but that is all for now. It is exactly the same with our domestic focus. We have had some nice moments in recent weeks and we enjoyed them at the time, but they too must be boxed off.
Aston Villa is such a strong team and we cannot have our minds on anything today other than winning individual and collective battles during the 90 minutes plus stoppage time. Stay totally in the game. Know there will be setbacks within the contest itself and be ready to respond. Know that today the only thing that can be won is three points, so let’s try with all we have to achieve that.
This squad has shown they all recognise the value of their contribution, and for us to enjoy great moments every single person has to perform to their best each and every day. I can’t begin to tell you how valuable that is, to have players who recognise it and embrace it.
I know our supporters enjoyed the footage of the reaction on the bench to our winning goal at Wolves, seeing players who didn’t get on the pitch that day celebrate as wildly as those who did. I totally understand why fans love those scenes so much. But that really is just a tiny snapshot of the mentality and togetherness our group has. More importantly than how they celebrate is how they approach their work on a daily basis, how they train and keep themselves ready to perform when called upon. I can tell you, until now, it is one of the best I have experienced.
We are in the most intense period of the campaign and it’s a period that lasts for weeks and weeks. We are nothing and will achieve nothing without the total commitment of this entire playing squad. We are so blessed, as a club, to have this remarkable group of players who put collective achievement above all else. It must stay this way and we will all work to make it so”.