'How it is' - Jurgen Klopp doubles down on controversial Liverpool decision

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)
Liverpool suffered a sobering 3-0 loss against Atalanta in the Europa League quarter-final first leg at Anfield.

Jurgen Klopp has admitted he would not change Liverpool’s starting line-up if he could replay their sobering loss against Atalanta.

The Reds face elimination from the Europa League after suffering a 3-0 defeat by the Serie A side in the quarter-final first leg at Anfield. Klopp opted to make six changes to his team from last Sunday’s 2-2 draw at Manchester United as he benched Mo Salah, Dominik Szoboszlai and Andy Robertson.

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The trio were brought on at half-time with Liverpool a goal down following Gianlucca Scamacca’s goal. But things got worse for the Reds after the break with Scamacca doubling Atalanta’s advantage before Mario Pasalic compounded the home side’s misery.

But given the busy schedule Liverpool find themselves in as they face Crystal Palace in the Premier League title race on Sunday, Klopp insists he’d name the same team in hindsight. The Reds boss said: “That's how it is. You lose the game then your changes are questionable. I get that, 100 per cent. For the reasons I did it I would do exactly the same way again, but as I said, if you want to be good in the rest of the season then we have to make changes. We have to. We didn't take off the three 'worst' players.

“That's probably what people make of it and how the boys looked at half-time. Nobody wants to [come off]. 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. Harvey was alright, Kosti [Tsimikas] not a lot of rhythm, so then you think, 'OK, come on, give the game a chance...' but, by the way, we lost the second half 2-0 and the first half 1-0, so I don't know which one was better. It's just how it is. It's absolutely fine. I am responsible for this result first and foremost, I know that, but the decision I would probably take the same.”

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