Champions LeagueReal Madrid

Klopp still believes despite Liverpool’s 5-2 defeat to Madrid at Anfield

Jurgen Klopp is adamant his side are still in the game despite losing 5-2 to Real Madrid in the first leg of the UEFA Champions League round of 16 tie at Anfield on Tuesday.

Liverpool raced into to 2-0 lead after goals from Darwin Nunez, and Mohammed Salah, but Vinicius Junior scored two goals to draw parity for Real Madrid at halftime.

Eder Militao gave Real Madrid the lead and Karim Benzema scored a brace to hand the cup holders a 5-2 comeback win against Liverpool.

Until the defeat, Liverpool had never conceded four goals at home in Europe, let alone five. Real Madrid also the first team in Champions League history to come from two goals down and win by a three-goal margin.

But despite the defeat, Jurgen Klopp still thinks his side can pull a shock.

“I think Carlo thinks the tie is over, and I think it as well in the moment. But in three weeks…”, said Klopp.

The German further discussed how his team gifted Real Madrid the goals.

“The second goal was slapstick, equalised our second goal. The first goal we have to defend better, there are enough players around. It is just a world-class moment from Vinicius as well but obviously, we can defend better.

“Half-time was rather positive, we have to play in this and that spaces, and then we start with a third goal which is a horrible goal and pretty much the game-changer. We lost the momentum in that moment and never got it back.

“In the second half, the game was the game Real Madrid wanted to play. The other goals, one is deflected and they are not really well defended. We lose the ball in the wrong moment which is a problem for Real Madrid with the counter-attacking threat they have.”

Asked whether the heavy defeat could destroy the confidence of his players, Klopp was adamant that he would not let this happen. “That is absolutely not allowed,” he added.

“I told the boys, one result, the opposite of what we wanted, but a defeat is only a defeat if you do not learn from it, if you do not learn that the start was outstanding and was us in a nutshell, so if we allow this one game to be influential we are really silly.

“Yes, we have things to improve. Third goal, massively. First goal, massively. But the intensity, the effort we showed, the football, was everything we want to see so we have to make sure we keep it; 5-2 could be damaging but I have to make sure that does not happen.”

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