Cape Town — Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has had to defend his team selection after conceding late in recent draws to Sevilla and Chelsea.
The Reds squandered a three-goal lead to draw 3-3 against Sevilla in the Champions League in midweek, before a late goal from Willian on Saturday saw the Blues draw 1-1 at Anfield.
“I have not for a second the impression that it is a psychological thing,” Klopp said.
The German coach needed to answer for the omission of Roberto Firmino, Sadio Mane and Georginio Wijnaldum from the starting XI against Chelsea.
“You need to have options, if you don’t have options then you are moaning about it,” he said.
“All the other teams, the intensity is getting higher. We play again on Wednesday (tomorrow) against Stoke, and Saturday and Wednesday and so on.
“We cannot do it without using all the players. [Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain] deserved every minute he was on the pitch, Daniel [Sturridge] deserved it.
“[James Milner] deserves it all the time. If you bring these players and don’t use them it would be a real waste of quality.”
Klopp also insisted that he’s not a fan of time-wasting as a tactic, saying that “we try to close games down, but we don’t do it in a cynical way”.
“We don’t do it like ‘oh sit down again’….you have seven minutes overtime then,” Klopp added.
“The day when somebody thinks like this, with not being a proper sportsman and being fair, then I stop. If it’s not okay anymore that we try our best, then it is something wrong.
“Yes, you have to be smart, yes you have to be clever in different situations. (But I) didn’t see a lot where we had to stay down. If you don’t hear a whistle you have to stay up.”
Meanwhile, West Ham United manager David Moyes believes his side will take plenty of confidence heading into Wednesday’s Premier League trip to his former club Everton after picking up a crucial point against Leicester City.
West Ham, currently 18th in the league, came from a goal down to draw 1-1 against Leicester on Friday, with Cheikhou Kouyate’s first half headed equaliser key to lifting the spirits of home supporters at the London Stadium.
Today: Leicester City v Tottenham Hotspur (21:45 King Power Stadium), Brighton & Hove Albion v Crystal Palace (21:45 The American Express Community Stadium), West Bromwich Albion v Newcastle United (22:00The Hawthorns), Watford v Manchester United (22:00 Vicarage Road Stadium).
Tomorrow: Arsenal v Huddersfield Town (21:45 Emirates Stadium), Chelsea v Swansea City (21:45 Stamford Bridge), FC Bournemouth v Burnley (21:45 Vitality Stadium), Stoke City v Liverpool (22:00 Bet365 Stadium), Manchester City v Southampton (22:00 Etihad Stadium), Everton v West Ham United (22:00 Goodison Park). — AFP/Supersport.