Jurgen Klopp names Liverpool's fittest player this season - and it's not Mohamed Salah

Liverpool’s Premier League title bid recommences against Crystal Palace at Anfield.
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

Jurgen Klopp is hoping that Curtis Jones’ outing against Atalanta will be crucial for Liverpool in their Premier League title bid.

Jones had been a regular starter throughout the season before suffering an ankle injury in a 4-1 win over Brentford on 17 February. The midfielder made two appearances from the substitutes’ bench before returning to the starting line-up in the Europa League quarter-final first-leg tie against Atalanta.

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Liverpool suffered a shock 3-0 loss at Anfield, with Jones surprisingly withdrawn at half-time. Speaking after the game, Reds manager Klopp said: “Curtis came back from injury, you could see good moments and then, again, it was the most important training session he had now since he is back. Forty-five minutes, going over the point constantly.”

Liverpool were only a goal behind when Jones was replaced by Dominik Szoboszlai. If anything, the Reds were worse in the second period despite Mo Salah and Andy Robertson also being introduced at the interval.

Liverpool’s European hopes may hang by a thread but their aspirations of being crowned Premier League champions remain firmly alive. They’re joint-top of the table along with Arsenal and welcome Crystal Palace to Anfield on Sunday.

Klopp admitted that Jones’ pressing has been key to the Reds’ way of playing this season but the 23-year-old - who has scored five goals in 31 outings this term - tired against Atalanta. Speaking ahead of Palace’s visit, Klopp said: “You saw Curtis who was for the most part of the season the fittest player, pressed for 90 minutes like crazy, today after 20 minutes he was 100 per cent surprised, I was surprised as well: ‘Oh look, he feels the intensity already'.

"That is why we made the change at half-time. We don’t have to force that through. They all have massive quality, we as a group all together didn’t show it tonight and that is why we lost the game."

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