LONDON (Reuters) - Liverpool manager Juergen Klopp is prepared for his German compatriot and friend David Wagner to adopt a defensive approach when Huddersfield Town visit Anfield on Saturday.
“Against (Manchester) United they parked the bus and won the game. They will probably try to play the same way here,” Klopp told a news conference on Friday.
He did add, however, that promoted Huddersfield are “a good counter-attacking team”, which Liverpool will need to beware of as they seek to repair the damage from last weekend’s 4-1 defeat by Tottenham Hotspur.
Town had fallen away after a bright start to their first season at the highest level since 1971-72, but they shocked Jose Mourinho’s United with a 2-1 win after scoring twice in the first 33 minutes.
The two Germans were team-mates at Mainz and then worked together as coaches at Borussia Dortmund before both taking a job in England. Klopp promises they will remain great friends whatever happens this weekend.
”I am happy we play against each other in the Premier League. It’s exciting 100 percent.
”Our friendship will last for the rest of our lives but I want to win this game. It will be the same for him.
“I’ve said the worst things to David than anyone else in the world and we’re still friends.”
Klopp defended centre-half Dejan Lovren, whose errors early on contributed to the defeat by Spurs.
”When I think about Dejan there are a lot more positive things than negatives ones,“ he said. ”Everything is ok. He’s had good week.
”We take this really seriously. We analysed Monday and then the preparations started for Huddersfield.
”We have to defend better. We need to be confident again, we need to be brave.
“But we’ve worked more this week because we’ve had time.”
Liverpool do not yet know whether the influential playmaker Philippe Coutinho will be fit for Saturday’s game.
There was better news of England’s Adam Lallana and Senegal’s Sadio Mane, who should be back after the next international break, which in Mane’s case is slightly ahead of schedule.
He was expected to be out for up to six weeks when injuring a hamstring playing for his country earlier this month.
Reporting by Steve Tongue Editing by Jeremy Gaunt