In this Interview Peter Phillips talks to Dave Hendrick about the Derby and WBA game…..
1) Firstly Dave lets talk about Sunday`s game , the team line up and the rotation of players has led to Jurgen Klopp to come in for some criticism for making so many changes and upsetting the rhythm of the team , what’s your take on it ?
Personally I would have played the same team vs Everton that played against Spartak. That’s probably our strongest fit 11, bar Lovren filling in for Matip, and they were incredible against Moscow. Obviously Moreno couldn’t play so Robertson had to come in, but I’d have kept the rest the same and saved the rotation for this West Brom game. With that said, I don’t blame Klopp. We still should have beaten them. Klopp doesn’t make the mouse in Lovren’s head fall off the wheel. We didn’t win because Lovren can’t manage the basics of defending, simple as that. If you want to blame Klopp for anything, blaming him for not selling Lovren and buying someone good.
2) Interview, klopp got very angry at the reporter was this frustration that he thought he’d done the right thing by making the changes but the reality was he hadn’t and his emotions boiled over?
I think that was frustration towards the players who let him down. Lovren for the penalty, Mane for the miss and the midfield – especially Henderson – for such poor performances. Klopp will never criticise his players publicly but I got the feeling he wanted to in that situation because the interviewer seemed to blaming him. It’s good to see him getting angry though. It shows he cares, shows he understands how much the Derby means.
3) Klopp took Mo Salah off on 65minutes , should he have played longer?
Yeah, I think so. If he wanted to take off one of the front 3 I though Mane was the one he should have hooked. But Klopp has gotten the rotation spot on over the last few weeks and it appears like he has everything planned out for the December games so I’m not going to have a go at him over it.
4) Was it unfair on Solanke to throw him in in such a big game?
No I don’t think so. Look down the other end and Calvert-Lewin is playing. He’s only a few months older than Solanke. When you join Liverpool, you do so to play in big games. If Solanke didn’t have the mindset for it then he’s at the wrong club. I think he handled it well. He didn’t play particularly well but he did ok. I think the experience of playing in a Derby at a young age will be good for him moving forward.
5) Hard to 2nd guess klopps team lineup do you think he will make wholesale changes again?
Yes, I think we can expect a bunch of changes for the West Brom game. Possibly 6 changes, mostly personnel but also positions. Ox might start out wide for example.
6) What threat will WBA pose to Liverpool on Wednesday?
It’s a funny one. They’re normally horrible to play against, and with a new manager you’d often expect a good initial run of results. But West Brom have been shocking this season. No wins in their last 15 games in all competitions after starting the season with 3 wins out of 3 in all competitions. They’re still relatively hard to beat, and their defence isn’t as bad as you’d expect for a team 4th for bottom – only conceded two goals more than us, but I actually fancy us to give them a hiding. If we start with Gini-Emre-Phil in midfield, and say Salah-Bobby-Ox upfront, I think we’ll cut them apart and might put 4 or 5 past them. And it’s Pardew. He’s terrible. He’s made no difference since taking over. How he continues to get Premier League jobs is beyond me. I really like West Brom as a club but if they go down, it might be a huge help to the greater good. It might end Pulis AND Pardew as Premier League managers.
7) What is your score prediction?
4-0 to Jurgen’s rampant Reds.
Big Thanks to Dave for taking the time out for F.O.L