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01st Sep 2018

“It needs to happen so it doesn’t happen again” – Klopp on Alisson’s howler

Melissa Reddy

Jurgen Klopp has implored Liverpool to use Alisson’s ability with the ball at his feet in the “right moments” after the goalkeeper’s gaffe in the 2-1 victory at Leicester City.

The Reds won their opening four games of a Premier League season for the first time, but saw their rearguard breached due to a poor decision from the Brazilian after keeping three clean sheets.

On 63 minutes, with Liverpool 2-0 up, Alisson collected a bad backpass from Virgil van Dijk and instead of clearing the ball, tried to trick Kelechi Iheanacho, who robbed him of possession and fed Rachid Ghezzal to pull a goal back.

The 25-year-old, signed from Roma this summer for £65 million, had executed a chip against Brighton last week and warned fans that he “takes risks.”

However, his misjudgement – which he is “angry” about – at King Power Stadium was not calculated. “It was last week when he did what he did [the chip] and the way everybody spoke about it, it was clear that it would happen one day that we conceded a goal because of that,” Klopp said.

“But we still want to use it. I have to watch it back but I thought Joe Gomez could have cleared the situation, then Virgil for sure could have cleared it. In the end, if Alisson with the first touch puts the ball away, everything is fine. For some reason, he didn’t do that, he dribbled and they scored the goal. That’s it.

“I said to him, it’s the best game to do it because we still won the game and we ticked that box. As a team, we are still in the period where we have to adapt to each other and not use him in the wrong moments. He’s not the solution for us, he’s an option.

“We did it a few times too much and it’s not cool. If we concede a second goal we have to take that as well. They had one or two situations where we needed the goalkeeper; the block from Joe Gomez was brilliant of course. We had these situations but they had them as well, so we are the deserved winner and that’s the only thing I’m interested in.”

When asked whether such errors have to be accepted as part of the package given Alisson’s playing style, Klopp responded: “No. It’s only positive that he is that good a footballer.

“But we all have to learn to use it in the right way still. That means, pass the ball in the right moment, then immediately make another offer for him, open some passing options. That’s the job for the team, play the pass in the right moment, not on a dry pitch and not hard enough.

“Don’t do it in these moments. That was a mistake – no goalkeeper in the world should dribble in that situation. But he did it. But it’s all OK. For me, much more interesting is how the reaction was and it was good. We still used him in better situations. The crowd wanted to make him a bit nervous but he didn’t look nervous. That helps a lot. Then it’s all fine. Football is a game where a lot of mistakes happen over 90 minutes.

“But that one was a big one, decisive because we conceded a goal. But the reaction was brilliant and I’m completely fine. How I said, it was always clear it will happen. It needed to happen so that it will not happen again. I think today was the day.”

Alisson, meanwhile, said: “I’m not going to be stupid and make the same mistake.