Liverpool have defensive worries ahead of West Ham tie

Liverpool have defensive worries ahead of West Ham tie

Liverpool have defensive worries ahead of West Ham tie

Liverpool finished 25 points behind champions Manchester City last season, and Klopp was asked at news conference on Friday what needed to be done to close the gap this time around after a summer in which Fabinho, Naby Keita, Xherdan Shaqiri and goalkeeper Alisson joined the club.

However he expects to be without a number of players when his team host Manuel Pellegrini's Hammers due to a series of what Klopp described as "little niggles", or minor injuries.

"We will see, we have not big issues but we have these little things where we have to think about if it's a risk or not and if it's a risk do we take it or not and all that stuff". But for me it is more hard when you don't have players, when you just have XI, when you don't have any problems, when you just choose exactly the same XI every week. But that all made sense - we had to create a squad which is strong enough and wide enough to cope with the Premier League and to be as successful as possible. What about United? What about the other clubs? We can't go there and only win because we are Liverpool. I don't think about that because it's not what we have now, it's about what we make of it, how often we deliver, how often we bring ourselves in a mood to fight against all these Premier League teams who all want to have our points.

If Matip and Gomez are unavailable, Nathaniel Phillips, who has performed well in pre-season, will likely partner Van Dijk.

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"It is hard to win every game, if we see how Wolves, Fulham or Everton act, they are all ambitious". They didn't lose any players and they brought in [Riyad] Mahrez. I am always aiming as high as I can and if we can put West Ham in the Champions League why not?

"We have to be more consistent, we know that". We can improve everything.

But he said his team would also need a change in luck if they are to catch last year's runaway champions Manchester City.

"Lucas has had a good career and has the quality to be in this squad and I hope he will be a success here".

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