Klopp says Liverpool must 'go back to basics' as they face Wolves in FA Cup crunch

German manager will put out strongest side possible in third-round replay at Molineux

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As Liverpool prepare to take on Wolves in an FA Cup replay on Tuesday, manager Jurgen Klopp says his side must go back to basics to turn around their current crisis.

On Saturday, the Anfield outfit went down to their sixth defeat in the Premier League this season when they lost 3-0 at Brighton. The result left Klopp's team ninth in the table – 10 points off the Champions League places.

Liverpool were held 2-2 in the first FA Cup third-round clash against Wolves at Anfield and when asked about how he can remedy his team's dramatic loss of form ahead of the replay at Molineux, Klopp said they must become harder to beat.

“To play better football than we did at Brighton should not be too difficult,” he said. “We have to go back to basics and from there you can make steps. We have to be more compact

“These are football problems and you solve them with football. We have to play better, we have to defend. In too many moments, the pitch looks too big.

“We have to do some things slightly different and some things the same.”

Klopp vowed to field the strongest possible line-up against Wolves, but said he may have to make changes from the team that lost to Brighton.

“Wolves are in a good moment; they played well here, won the game at the weekend (1-0 at home to West Ham United). It will be tough,” Klopp said.

“Not all players who played the last game are available now for different reasons, and we will make changes. We want to win the game.

“I could say to the players who lost at Brighton, 'You got us in this situation, let's see how you get us out'. But that wouldn't be taking responsibility, I can't do that. I will take decisions, we will make changes. That makes sense.”

Meanwhile, Wolves manager Julen Lopetegui refused to talk about any new signings at the club ahead of the FA Cup replay with Liverpool.

Paris Saint-Germain coach Christophe Galtier has confirmed attacking midfielder Pablo Sarabia is set to move to the Premier League, with Molineux his expected destination.

Flamengo midfielder Joao Gomes is also a target, with Wolves having already signed Matheus Cunha on an initial loan from Atletico Madrid.

“We will see, it’s true we have interest in some players but when they are here and our players we can talk about them, not before,” said Lopetegui.

“I want to put the focus on our players. We don’t want to waste energy on other things. We will talk only about our players.”

Liverpool 2 Wolves 2 - player ratings

Wolves were furious after Toti Gomes’ goal was ruled out for a controversial offside in the 2-2 draw at Anfield, with the club writing to referees’ chief Howard Webb to ask for an explanation.

Diego Costa could return to the squad after missing Saturday’s victory over West Ham while Sasa Kalajdzic (knee), Boubacar Traore (groin) and Pedro Neto (ankle) are out.

“Liverpool are one of the best teams in the world,” added Lopetegui. “The quality of his [Jurgen Klopp] players, the coach, his history.

“I’m sure they’re going to come here and look to do a big match. We have to be ready to overcome them.

“The FA Cup is going to be an important aim for them – us too – we have to fight to overcome one of the best teams in the world.

“It’s more or less the same (how Wolves deal with Liverpool following the original draw), maybe they can change something but we only focus on what we want to do.

“When you play every three days it’s not a lot of time to prepare so you have to balance the time to be able to work with the team.”

Brighton 3 Liverpool 0 - player ratings

Updated: January 16, 2023, 3:43 PM
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