Jürgen Klopp: Liverpool cannot get in Palace situation often, but we have the quality to find solutions when we do

Jürgen Klopp: Liverpool cannot get in Palace situation often, but we have the quality to find solutions when we do

Jürgen Klopp declared himself pleased with the character of his Liverpool side as they edged a dramatic 4-2 win over Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park on Saturday evening, but warned they must avoid repeating similar mistakes and getting into such situations in the future.

Charlie Malam

Jürgen Klopp praised the character of his Liverpool team as they won 4-2 at Crystal Palace, having twice thrown the lead away in the first-half, to move level on points with the top of the Premier League.

Emre Can and Dejan Lovren both saw goals cancelled out by James McArthur headers in a breathless first 33 minutes, before Joel Matip's first goal for the Reds restored their advantage a third time prior to the break.

Roberto Firmino put the game beyond doubt on 71 minutes, lifting a finish over Steve Mandanda as the Eagles goalkeeper raced from his line and sealing an eighth win from their last nine games in all competitions.

And Klopp was encouraged by his side's show of determination as they responded to their first-half setbacks to overcome the tough test of Alan Pardew's charges that posed, but warned that they cannot afford to get themselves in such situations regularly.

Character of the team never in question, says Reds boss

The Liverpool manager jokingly apologised for the "boring performance" of his team before declaring: "Of course, it was all good. I wasn't too happy with the start. [We were] not clear enough, not direct enough. Good football-wise, but not how it should be."

He praised his players for scoring "nice goals" and creating "unbelievable chances" as he said that they "really could've scored more."

"Then we opened the game up again ourselves. We thought there is always excitement when Liverpool is part of the game," Klopp joked, calling Palace's first goal "especially" a "present."

The German also felt that the second goal "was not good defending" and that "a good header" from McArthur which "opened the game" up again.

He felt that the atmosphere was "really intense" after Palace made it 2-2, and then that after Matip's goal once again restored their lead they were "not clear enough" and "didn't play football enough" in the early stages of the second-half.

Klopp said that the Reds' start after the break was "a problem" because it was "still a wild game" and his players "invested a lot" and had to be wary of Christian Benteke, who he insisted "was jumping in the sky, deflecting all the balls, difficult to defend."

But he insisted that because they scored their fourth goal, it killed off the game and that while "everything could've happened in this game" nobody could have said "it was not a deserved win."

On the character of his team, Klopp added: "Since I've been at Liverpool, I've been happy with the character of my boys. That was never a question for me."

But the manager also admitted that it's "still football" and they "cannot strike back every day" so they should "not come in situations like this too often", though he also lauded: "But we're good enough to find a solution in situations like this. 2-0 would have been better for half-time than 3-2, but now everything is good."

Klopp: I'm happy with reaction to Palace goals, but not the situation and our start

Liverpool had been criticised before the Palace clash, in which Lovren made a critical mistake for the first goal and Alberto Moreno failed to close down Wilfried Zaha for the cross for the second.

And Klopp insists his side are continually working on improving at the back as he vowed that they "will sort the defence" and then "will see" what "then happens."

He believes his side "can defend really well" and acknowledged that after "this game" then "everyone will talk about" their defending, but he dismissed the criticisms by saying his players are "all human beings" and they "work on it."

"I am completely convinced about the quality [in the team]," the Reds boss said, insisting that it is a "very good test for them" when they "make mistakes and stay in the game."

Klopp was pleased that his side "stood in the game" and called himself "happy with the reaction" although not "with the situation" or "the start of the game", saying that is what his team "have to work on."

He continued: "But I am happy with the reaction. So, I am fine, we will work on it and then we will see where it leads us to."

German lauds 'outstanding' work-rate of Coutinho

Having expressed his delight at the way his team responded to their first-half setbacks, Klopp also raved about the performance of Man of the Match Philippe Coutinho.

The Brazilian set up Lovren and Matip's header with excellent corner deliveries and helped Liverpool control proceedings with a creative display from a deeper position.

"What can I say?" said Klopp when asked about Coutinho, "Phil is a good football player, everybody knew that before I think."

He praised the 24-year-old for his "outstanding" work-rate and lauded how "important" his industry and application is "for the team", adding: "You cannot change this because you cannot be a genius every day. Then, you have to be a kind of proper football player still. All good. That's how the boys are."