Jurgen Klopp's key quotes from AC Milan 1 - 2 Liverpool
MILAN, ITALY - DECEMBER 07: (BILD OUT) head coach Juergen Klopp of Liverpool FC gestures during the UEFA Champions League group B match between AC Milan and Liverpool FC at Giuseppe Meazza Stadium on December 7, 2021 in Milan, Italy. (Photo by Sportinfoto/DeFodi Images via Getty Images)

 

Liverpool travelled to the San Siro to face AC Milan, who currently sit top of the Serie A in Italy. The Rossoneri needed to win to stand any chance of progressing into the next round of the Champions League.

Having already confirmed their spot as group winners in the previous match week Jurgen Klopp's side fielded a heavily rotated squad with the likes of Neco Williams, Nat Jones and Tyler Morton all starting.

The home side got themselves into the lead after Alisson parried a corner kick into the path of Fikayo Tomori who tapped in from a few yards out. 

Mohamed Salah was quick to nullify their goal. The Egyptian half volleyed Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain's parried effort into the roof of the net. 

After scoring the late winner at the weekend against Wolves, Divock Origi continued his scoring streak heading in Liverpool's winner in the second half. 

The Reds finish the game top of 'the group of death' becoming the first English side to win all 6 matches of a Champions League group stage. After the match Klopp spoke to the press, as per Liverpoolfc.com.

A perfect ending to the group of death

It looked to be a tough Champions League campaign for Liverpool when they drew former winners of the competition AC Milan and Porto in a group alongside 2016 finalists Atletico Madrid

But with a perfect return of six wins, conceding just six goals and scoring 17, Liverpool topped the group becoming the first English side to go flawless in a Champions League group.

Jurgen Klopp commented on the pride of becoming the first English side to do so, he said: "Honestly, I don’t feel pride a lot in football because most of the time I expect good things to happen, to be honest, but that tonight fills me with a lot of pride.

"It’s an exceptional performance. I don’t mean that we won six games – the reason is especially this game because it was so good. With that many changes, it is easy for me to make the changes but in the end the boys have to be then confident enough to show how good they are. And I saw so many good football things tonight, it was absolutely incredible.

"The fact we won all the games, which is absolutely incredible and it’s just another chapter in the history of this wonderful group of players. What they did in the last few years is exceptional."

Tyler Morton in cruise control

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A heavily rotated squad saw 19-year-old Tyler Morton make only his second start in the Champions League. The teenager controlled the midfield for 90 minutes and looked like one of the most comfortable players on the pitch. After full time, Klopp had nothing but praise for the youngster. 

"I don’t want to make his life more complicated than it is already with playing at such a young age for a club like Liverpool in a game like this with a performance like this, so I think we should all calm down – but it was really good tonight.

"It was a big pleasure to watch the boy playing and the football knowledge, the football brain he showed tonight was absolutely exceptional. If you are technically on that level – and he is, obviously – and you have then such good orientation then sometimes you have enough time for doing good stuff. That was what he did tonight. On top of that, he defended incredibly well, together with the other boys."

New duo, No problem

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Another player to get some minutes under their belt was Nat Philips who paired up with Ibrahima Konate for the first time. The Englishman made his second start of the season and was tasked with the agonisingly difficulty challenge of keeping Zlatan Ibrahimovic quiet. The pair did brilliantly and Klopp was delighted with their performances, he said: "I really thought we defended exceptionally well. The plan of Milan is playing through the centre obviously, playing through the half-spaces. This is the spaces between the winger and our eights. They don’t play immediately to Zlatan, they try to bring it to the other offensive player in these spaces, and we made that really complicated because of the disciplined work of all the players. When you then get only the other balls, not the controlled ones then it’s easier to defend.

"But I have to say that Nat Phillips and Ibou Konate played an exceptional game, an absolutely exceptional game. How they defended that tonight is outstanding and I am really, really proud of the boys."

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