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- Liverpool recorded a 3-1 victory over LASK in the opening match of the Europa League
- The Reds scored a goal but fought back in the second half to take the win
Jurgen Klopp has warned that Liverpool will not ‘fly’ through the Europa League and that they will have to dig in to win the competition after a difficult first outing against Austrian Bundesliga side LASK.
Goals from Darwin Nunez, Luis Diaz and substitute Mo Salah saw Liverpool overturn a half-time deficit to win a match 1-0 for the fourth time in five games. And Klopp insists it shows this Europe campaign will not be easy for the Reds.
“I know people expect us to fly through this competition,” said the German, who won his 50th European match by beating LASK. ‘It will not happen. We have to dig in and I thought so. We can learn so much.’
Speaking about the 50th win, which is more than any Liverpool manager in history, Klopp added: ‘If I still get 50 wins after the group stage, then I will still be the most successful Liverpool manager… and everyone would hate it!’
Klopp said he thought the first half was better than many – including his own players – thought, saying: ‘We had very good moments but suffered a lot from the bad moments. The frustration grew.
Jurgen Klopp has warned his side that their journey in the Europa League will not be easy
Luis Diaz (L) was one of the goalscorers as Liverpool defeated 3-1 from a goal down
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‘I’m sure the boys thought there was nothing good in the first half, but that’s not true. I’m really happy. I knew it would be difficult. The victory was well deserved.’
Speaking about Liverpool’s slow start, Michael Owen told TNT Sports: ‘I think he will be a bit concerned. He’ll probably look at it: Why did that happen? Is it a coincidence or does it happen too much to draw conclusions?
‘But the overriding feeling would be a bit of relief. It’s a great first result when you’re three points away from home and you’re in a really good position. He will be happy, but have a few minor concerns about why it happens all the time. But it is a character trait to keep coming back.’
Klopp also confirmed that Ryan Gravenberch, who made his full debut here, left with cramp. “Ryan played a super game and was really decisive for us,” said the manager, who complemented Stefan Bajcetic on his first start of the season: “Stefan found a way into the game.”