Jurgen Klopp was humble in victory, perhaps knowing the stage was a bit bigger than his usual biting quips (though let’s face it: They would’ve been beautiful on Tuesday).
Liverpool beat Man City 2-1 on the day and 5-1 over two legs to earn a trip to the UEFA Champions League semifinals.
That statement would’ve seemed farfetched a couple of months ago, and the score line is an eye-rubber even after witnessing the tie.
Did Klopp salute his team for gorgeous football or “the way the game is supposed to look?” Not this time, perhaps to his credit, even lauding rival boss Pep Guardiola for the chances he took in formation and personnel.
“He (Pep Guardiola) took all the risks and it was his decision and it could’ve been the absolute right one, it’s easy to say afterwards. They could’ve scored two or three goals in the first half but it was 100 percent clear that if we win the ball we’d have an opportunity.
“The last situation in the first half was how you do the counter-attack and that’s how we scored the two goals. It’s not about perfection it’s about the result, the character, the mentality, really fighting for the result. We defended well, it’s not our best game but we deserved it at the end.”
Fine margins. Liverpool was scrappy and unquestionably deserved their win, but Man City’s finishing was off in both contests. The Reds advanced having been out-attempted 31-14, converting five times against one of the best defenses in the world this season. Klopped!