Jurgen Klopp has explained why Liverpool’s 3-0 win over Bournemouth was bigger than the three points.
The Reds went into that game under plenty of pressure after draws against Leicester City and West Ham United threatened to derail a title bid.
While Liverpool have never given up top spot without a game in hand, they missed a chance to go seven points clear against Leicester. Their lead then shortened against West Ham, leading to worries about the pressure.
Then came Bournemouth, however. Liverpool saw out a comfortable win over the Cherries, getting their title challenge back on track.
Klopp believes the win against Bournemouth was about more than the result, though.
Klopp on the 3-0 win over Bournemouth
“I was so happy about the Bournemouth game,” he told the official site. “And not because of the result – that was important as well – but about the way we played in that game was so important to us because it was only after three weeks a little reminder: ‘Right, that’s how we can play as well.’
“I get that people start doubting pretty much immediately: ‘What happens now we didn’t win against Leicester?’ I think that was a difficult game for different reasons and then West Ham, we didn’t play well. That’s the truth but we still got a point and then against Bournemouth, a really good game.
“And now that’s the way we want to play, we have to be lively. Lively and full of confidence you can only be if you really believe in what you do, that’s the truth.”
So Klopp believes that the Bournemouth win lifted not just pressure but doubts.
It shows exactly how fragile a title bid can be. Liverpool’s record against sides outside the ‘big six’ was literally perfect before the Leicester game but two ‘poor’ results knocked them back.
As the boss says, there’s no better remedy than a comfortable win, playing the football you want to play, though. Klopp quickly found that in the win over Bournemouth; these are the results that can make history for Liverpool this year.