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Klopp: Neco is a defensive option for the future

Jurgen Klopp has sung the praises of right-back Neco Williams after the young Welsh star produced another strong performance on the big stage.

The Reds crashed out of the FA Cup after losing 2-0 to Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Tuesday night.

Williams was part of an experienced back four which included the first choice centre back of Virgil Van Dijk and Joe Gomez pairing and Andy Robertson.

Despite being the youngest member of the defence, the 18 year-old more than held his own which the manager was quick to notice.

The Liverpool Echo reported Klopp as saying:

“Neco played a super game tonight.

 

"It showed we can have a second full-back coming which helps us massively for the future."

 

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The break-out star of the cup run by Liverpool has undoubtedly been Curtis Jones and while the fellow academy graduate of Williams found it tough going against vastly more experienced opponents, Klopp believed he would have learnt a great deal.

“Curtis showed so many things tonight when people thought ‘wow, what a player’ then you lose the ball.

“That’s a learning process. You can’t learn it at home in your living room, you have to learn it on the pitch and react to it.

The loss was the third in four games, and the manager was asked the inevitable question whether he was concerned.

"I’m not worried about momentum. Momentum is not something you go and get and then just have it. 

“You can lose it but then you have to go and get it again.

“We have always the chance to get it back. So I’m not concerned about momentum.

"We never thought it would be an easy season, period, game tonight; nothing. It was always difficult.

“We did well tonight but we weren’t good enough.

 

"The performance tonight was completely different from Watford.

“Against Watford it was bad, but tonight was not bad. 

“That performance tonight I’m not concerned about, that’s football.”

 

One thing that Klopp hasn’t given much thought to is the ramifications of the coronavirus come the last few months of the season.

He said it is a topic an individual like him shouldn’t be talking about in a public forum.

“What I don’t like in life is for a very serious thing, a football manager’s opinion is important.

“I really don’t understand it. It’s not important what famous people say. 

“People with no knowledge like me talking about it, people with knowledge should be the ones telling people what to do.

“Not football managers. I don’t understand politics, the coronavirus. Why me? I wear a baseball cap.

“I’m concerned like everyone else. 

“I live on this planet and I want it to be safe and healthy, I wish everybody the best absolutely. 

“But my opinion on coronavirus is not important.”



 

Edited by TLW


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Got a fair bit of joy out of targeting him, but I wouldn't blame him for that really. He played well enough, never shied away from it.  Hopefully learned a lot.

 

Felt the second goal he really should have clocked that Fabinho was on a yellow and then taken Barkley out. But then if the ref had called the foul on Mane, Fabinho wouldn't have made a desperation challenge and gotten booked. Or if we'd taken care of the ball more - no idea why we are aimlessly heading the ball into the middle all the time.

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I tihnk he's looked good in the games he's played. Played well last night too, not a perfect performance by any means, but he's only 18. I remember one occasion he showed some pace getting back and preventing a promosing attacking position. He delivered some good crosses too. Isn't it great we have two talented young RBs!?

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He had a good first half.  Completely went out of the game for the second and was poor when he had it.  He doesn’t look phased or out of his depth though which is a good sign.

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Jurgen's always going to praise his players and look for the positives. I thought a lot of chelsea attacks came down his side of the pitch either when he was caught out of position or lofted over him.

 

He got in some great positions last night but then started taking potshots like he did against Shrewsbury. I think he needs to keep a bit calmer head and look to get the ball in the danger area rather than letting fly.

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To be honest I thought he was ok but constantly.umder pressure. Different games different personel but our r.h.s looks vunerable Trent/Salah Williams/mane equally defensively lax and on back foot. I suspect that they are not getting the same protection from the middle to rhs of mid field. Gini looks gassed and Jones got pulled into central position a lot. For Bournemouth want to see milner or hendo on this side to add a bit of bite

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The entire back 4 were even higher than usual. They did target him but I thought he coped pretty well. He must have been under instructions to be as high as he was. A couple of the crosses in the first half were excellent. 

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He’s impressed me every time I’ve seen him. Very composed on the ball and excellent vision, passing and crossing. Get a bit stronger and develop a bit more in the defensive positioning and we could soon have two excellent young right full backs.

 

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