Jurgen Klopp says the intensity of the Merseyside derby is “too much” for him, and said the fixture is too physical ahead of Liverpool’s trip to Everton on Wednesday.
Liverpool go into Wednesday’s derby having won back-to-back Premier League games 4-0, seeing off Southampton on Saturday at Anfield with a commanding display.
Speaking after the win, Klopp was asked if his side were taking momentum into Wednesday’s game at Goodison Park (kick-off 8.15pm), but after long-term injuries suffered by Virgil van Dijk and Thiago in last October’s contentious fixture, the German admitted he doesn’t like the intensity of the game.
“It’s always a completely different game, so I really very often don’t like the intensity of the game, it’s too much for me,” he told Sky Sports. “I like physical football, I have no problem with that, we play that, other teams play that, but in that game very often people put too much in. I can’t say it’s my favourite game of the year to be honest, because of that.
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“But we have the chance to watch Everton tomorrow, we will prepare for the game and will try to make a normal but good football game.”
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Image: Virgil van Dijk was injured for the entire season after a challenge from Jordan Pickford in last October's Merseyside derby
Everton won at Anfield for the first time since 1999 last season, but haven’t won a Merseyside derby fixture at Goodison Park since October 2010.
Speaking about Saturday’s victory over Southampton, which included two goals from Diogo Jota, Klopp was full of praise for the Portuguese forward, who played in a false nine position, saying he is the “perfect” Liverpool signing.
“Exceptional player exceptional boy. He’s the perfect signing because he has everything that a Liverpool player needs in this squad.
Image: Liverpool's Diogo Jota scored twice in the 4-0 win over Saints
“The technical skills, the physical skills, and he is very smart and can learn all the tactical stuff pretty quick. He can also play all positions. So it was very helpful, he has the speed and direction to finish situations off. His goalscoring record is pretty impressive.”
Liverpool were at their free-scoring best again on Saturday; they’ve netted 39 times in just 13 Premier League games this season, their highest goal total at this stage of a top-flight campaign.
They’ve also now scored two or more goals in 17 consecutive games in all competitions – becoming only the second ever English top-flight club to achieve this feat after Sunderland in 1927 (17).
FREE TO WATCH: Highlights from Liverpool’s win against Southampton in the Premier League.
Despite the comfortable win, Klopp said his side could have performed better, with Alisson forced into several fine saves to keep a third successive clean sheet in all competitions.
“The game went completely in our direction. We controlled the game pretty much. I said after the game to the boys, it was 4-0, what do I have to moan about? But we can and have to do much better. [Alisson’s] saves were too spectacular. But of course a lot of things were really good.
“We had a lot of good football moments today, and I think the people enjoyed it. It was cold here today, so we gave them a bit of warmth I think!”
Follow updates from Everton vs Liverpool on Wednesday night on the Sky Sports App and SkySports.com; kick-off 8.15pm. You can watch free highlights from the Merseyside derby shortly after full-time on the Sky Sports App, Sky Sports.com and Sky Sports Football YouTube channel.
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