February 19, 2018

Klopp: Liverpool must focus on Watford - not Hoffenheim

10 August 2017, 02:09 | Ken Black

BT SPORT Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard was not happy at Glenn Hoddle's Everton prediction

Steven Gerrard shaking his head at Glenn Hoddle

Jurgen Klopp has submitted his squad for Liverpool's Champions League play-off against Hoffenheim, ahead of the first leg on August 15.

New signing Mohamed Salah scored 4 goals in the pre-season and we can expect the Egyptian worldwide to start with Sadio Mane in the attack behind Roberto Firmino.

It's a fan's right to dream of what could be, no matter how impossible it may seem - just look at Leicester if you're in any doubt - and for Liverpool, it could very well be a season which ends 27 years without a league title.

But such worries mask what has been a positive summer from Klopp's perspective, with eight games producing some strong performances from the Reds' talented youth ranks, and the manager feeling like many individuals have progressed in their development.

Gerrard said that manager Klopp needs to teach his side two things though, if they want to be a force in the Premier League. This season is kind of the coming of age for him.

Gerrard left Liverpool to join LA Galaxy just months before Klopp arrived at Anfield and the 37-year-old admits he would have loved to have worked under the German during his own playing career.

Liverpool were unbeaten against the top six last season and they'll be hoping to carry that on for a second campaign running.

Liverpool completed their pre-season matches by beating Athletic Bilbao 3-1 in Dublin on Saturday, with Coutinho one of a number of players missing due to illness and niggles.

The former England global has now guided the U18 side through their pre-season schedule, which included three friendlies and a training camp in Hungary, as well as a third-placed finish in a warm-up tournament in Switzerland.

The 54-year-old, in response, has signed the prolific Romelu Lukaku, who claimed 25 goals last season, and two-time Premier League victor Nemanja Matic to shore up the midfield.

Q The Premier League has reached its 25th season.

Liverpool's Sporting Director Michael Edwards needs to take a large slice of the blame for the shambolic attempts to sign Van Dijk, with the novice appointed to the role last November and adopting an aggressive approach to the unsolicited transfer negotiations that ensured Southampton were riled and will now not sanction any deal.

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