Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp believes he is a ‘much better manager’ now than he was when he started.
The Reds boss joined Anfield in 2015 after the sacking of Brendan Rodgers, amidst huge fanfare for the German manager to lead Liverpool.
The manager has enjoyed a successful stint on Merseyside, despite not yet scoring a major trophy in his three year spell so far.
Liverpool have eight games in December, which means minimal time between matches for Klopp to prepare for games and coach his side the way he wants to.
Speaking to Sky Sports ahead of the Merseyside derby, Klopp admitted it’s a part of the game that is different to what he was used to – even in Germany.
“Coaches want to coach,” he says. “That is why we are good at it and that is why we have made our way up in the game. Then you get to the highest level and most of the time it is meetings.
“The job becomes more about getting the message across in those meetings rather than on the pitch. It is a big difference and you have to get used to that.
“There is nothing to moan about. It is like it is. The job is massively and completely different and that makes me a much better manager than I was when I started.”
“We have created many more than we have used,” he admits.
“That’s the nature of the thing. I have no problem with that. Yes, there is one team that has scored a lot more than us but the rest are on the same level and there will be games when the boys are flying.
“Those games will come. I am 100 per cent sure of that. We have already been really close in a lot of situations but right now we just need to get results.”
Liverpool have been criticised this season for not being their same free-flowing self from last season.
However, Klopp says this is by design – rather than something out of his control – whilst admitting the focus for him this season has been on the defensive side of the game.
“We had to develop things and we had to put the focus a bit more on defence,” he says. “I always think about how to win and defence is the basis for all of it.
“A lot of teams saw that we were good at that and realised they were overplaying. If the team gives us the opportunity to do it we will still be there with the counter-press. But very often it is not possible.
“A lot of teams also play counter-attack against us. They don’t have the same respect for us that they have for Man City, for example. Against City, you watch it and wonder what they are doing.
“A week later they play us and they are thinking, right, let’s try. City deserve that but it makes a big difference because we have to be 100 per cent concentrated all the time. It means that now we have to control more games. We have to keep the ball, especially against counter-attacking sides.
“That may change in the second part of the season when opponents who are down the table need the points and so they will need to open up a bit more. But at this moment we have to control games and be patient but in a very lively way.
“This was a big part of our thinking in pre-season as well. We really said that. It’s like we were so lively in the past that the moment we couldn’t be lively because there was no space for that it was like there was immediately this drop in concentration. That is not allowed.
“I like it more now actually. It is more mature. That was the next step for us. So far so good.”
Klopp’s side next face on Everton at Anfield on Sunday as they look to better their 1-1 and 0-0 results against the Blues last season.
You can keep up with all the drama on Sunday with LFC Globe’s live match-day coverage.