Jurgen Klopp is secure in his standing at Liverpool, so he doesn’t mind the speculation that Steven Gerrard could one day take his place as the manager at Anfield.
Well, the home manager, that is, because Gerrard was on the other side of the halfway line for Aston Villa’s 1-0 loss to Liverpool, and Klopp admitted it was “strange” to say hello to a former player who is now an opposing manager.
And he doesn’t mind the contemplation of Anfield’s future leaders.
“The good thing is I have no problem with this sort of thing,” Klopp said. “I will not be here forever so I would love it to be Stevie. But no I did not feel under pressure today.”
Klopp was probably relieved to get a win for a reason other than the identity of the opposing boss.
Liverpool was vibrant in ideas and work rate but sloppy in producing goals out of that work, requiring a Mohamed Salah penalty to deliver a ‘W’ — and that penalty was not welcomed as good officiating by Gerrard.
To be sure, Klopp wants better finishing when his side out-attempts the opposition 20-4 but still could’ve lost had Villa found its first shot on target and scored it.
“We came out in the second half and knew we had to keep going and improve in moments” Klopp said. “We were not calm enough in the last pass. We kept going. We scored with the penalty then the relief was obviously too big and it was an unnecessary open game. Like tooth pain! Nobody needs that. There are areas to improve even when we win football games, which is good.”
The Reds keep hold of second place on the Premier League table, a point ahead of Chelsea and one back of Man City.
Next up? A Thursday visit from Newcastle and a Sunday trip down to Tottenham.