(Reuters) - Manager Juergen Klopp has denied that Liverpool are suffering from fatigue after last weekend’s setback at Hull City, and urged fans to get behind the team when Tottenham Hotspur visit Anfield in the Premier League on Saturday.
A run of dire performances has seen Liverpool drop from second in the table on Dec. 31 to fifth place, with Klopp’s team winning one game in 10 in all competitions and none at all in the league since the start of the year.
Klopp refused to elaborate on Liverpool’s lethargic display at relegation-threatened Hull, but said the team would have to raise their game to have any hope of beating second-placed Tottenham, who are on a run of nine league games without defeat.
“I can explain performances from the first half against Hull, but that’s for me,” the manager told reporters on Friday.
”We had no sign in the week that this would happen. We had a good game against Chelsea... It’s not a physical issue. We were better in the second half against Hull. I was not happy. Even if we had won I’d have been angry about the first half.
“Against a team like Tottenham, we need everything we have got. It’s a strong opponent. If we play like we did in the first half against Hull, no chance. If we play like we did in the second half, better chance - but we should play better.”
Not for the first time this season, Klopp appealed to the Liverpool’s fans to ramp up the atmosphere inside Anfield, in the hope that it will help spark a revival.
“It would be really nice if together we could create an outstanding atmosphere,” the German added. “Let’s use that time in the stadium. I can’t force it.”
Midfielder Adam Lallana and defenders Dejan Lovren and Ragnar Klavan are all doubts for the game, Klopp said, adding that there was no truth to rumours that he planned to drop goalkeeper Simon Mignolet and replace him with Loris Karius.
Reporting by Simon Jennings in Bengaluru; Editing by Hugh Lawson