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Jurgen Klopp struggles to explain shocking Liverpool defeat at Bournemouth

Liverpool brought back to earth with a miserable defeat on England’s south coast.

Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah misses a penalty (Kieran Cleeves/PA)© Kieran Cleeves

Kevin PalmerSunday World

Seven steps forward followed by eight steps back.

That sums up Liverpool’s position after their 1-0 defeat at Bournemouth, as Jurgen Klopp’s side turned in a horribly flat performance a week after their historic 7-0 win against Manchester United.

Philip Billing’s sixth goal of the season was enough for the Cherries to secure a 1-0 victory to move off the foot of the Premier League, with Mohamed Salah shanked a second-half penalty wide to summing up a poor display on a wet and windy south-coast afternoon.

The defeat cost Liverpool a chance to break into the top four ahead of the second leg of their Champions League tie with Real Madrid and manager Klopp was bemused by his side’s display.

"What can I say? It was never really our game,” said Klopp.

"We were dominant in the first half but mostly we put ball in at the wrong moment against a compact side.

"They had their counter-attacks they wanted to have. I really think the spaces we had to play were super clear, super open.

"The rest was more or less busy with covering other spaces, we didn't use that often enough, didn't enjoy the challenge to face a deep, compact side. It's clear we cannot get through with all the balls but it was like we didn't get through and things didn't work out. Little things witch make a massive difference and then we go 1-0 down, not helpful obviously in the counter-attack.

"They did the same stuff but it was successful enough because we didn't defend it well and then I thought we started pretty well in the second half and then got the penalty and we missed it and after that we were in a real rush and didn't create enough really and that's it."

Klopp also reflected on Salah’s missed spot kick, as he spurned the Liverpool's first penalty of this Premier League season.

"The last penalty we got in the league was long ago and it's completely hypothetical but if we score there, the game could turn,” he added.

"It doesn't make the performance better but could change the result at least. He scores goals, he scores a lot of goals but he missed the penalty, that's life.

"It was clear from the first second that we come here, Bournemouth are fighting to stay in the league, wonderful club, wonderful city, they want to stay in and they do really well.

"Results were not going in the right direction in the last few months but the performances look different and so they deserve the three points today, that's it."


Gakpo blasted over in the dying embers as Bournemouth held on for just a second win from their last 11 league outings to relieve some of the pressure on O’Neil, who was appointed in the aftermath of Liverpool’s 9-0 thrashing of the Cherries earlier in the season.

That win proved something of a false dawn for Klopp’s side and they will now be hoping this loss is a setback rather than the end of a good run of form as their inconsistent campaign took another turn.

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