EPL

Klopp confident the goals will come for Reds winger Diaz

By Sports Desk August 15, 2022

Jurgen Klopp is confident the goals will come for Luis Diaz after the winger was wasteful in the 2-2 draw at Fulham last weekend.

Diaz missed two Opta-defined 'big chances' in the Reds' opening match of the Premier League season at Craven Cottage, rattling the post in the first half.

The Colombia international took no time to settle at Anfield following his big-money move from Porto in January, scoring six goals and providing five assists in 26 appearances last season.

Liverpool lost Sadio Mane to Bayern Munich in June, but Klopp is backing Diaz to help fill the void left by the Senegal forward.

Asked if Diaz can score 10-15 goals this season, the Reds manager said: "Oh definitely, that is his quality. We need to see but of course that is his potential.

"We work on it but not with Luis specifically. We don't take him out because the other two scored and he didn't, so we show him how. That's not necessary. It's not a problem. You can't force it

"Last week people were asking ‘How can you play without Sadio?' but in November/December everybody was thinking about when he would score the next goal, and Mo [Salah] was on fire. You just let it go.

"You see the situations Luis had, big chances, and he was just unlucky. He started on the first day with us and took part in all the sessions and that is the most important thing.

"All the rest will come. In the long term it is of course not a problem. It is about being prepared and fighting through moments like this."

Klopp called for patience with Diaz ahead of Liverpool's first home game of the season against Crystal Palace on Monday.

He added: "When Sadio played against us, he scored three times for Southampton but it was not that he scored every week. He didn't even start the game when he played against us.

"So the consistency came with the confidence and with the team-mates, the structure of our game. So that is what we're working on that doesn't change. The way we play should help strikers. It is the way we play. It's the way we bring the boys in the situation.

"Of course it is about whether it is in you or not, but it's the way we play, how we position the players, how we protect the players, where we win the balls back.

"And it is how the boys can use their speed in these moments. They will be in a lot of goalscoring situations and that then makes you the player we remember."

Related items

  • Argentina 3-0 Jamaica: Super sub Messi nets brace to extend unbeaten streak to 35 matches Argentina 3-0 Jamaica: Super sub Messi nets brace to extend unbeaten streak to 35 matches

    Argentina were never in any danger during their 3-0 friendly win against Jamaica on Tuesday, played at a neutral site in the United States' Red Bull Arena.

    Alvarez opened the scoring in the 13th minute thanks to some terrific work from Lautaro Martinez, who was able to snake his way into the box, beating multiple defenders to get to the touchline and drag one back along the edge of the six-yard box for a simple tap-in.

    Argentina continued to create half-chances throughout the remainder of the first half, and it was more of the same to begin the second 45, with Martinez going close after a slick one-touch pass from Alexis Mac Allister gave him some space inside the box, but he pushed his shot wide of the far-post.

    Lionel Messi was subbed on in the 56th minute, and just 10 minutes later he had his first chance after a one-two on the edge of the area allowed him to break into the left-hand side of the box, but his shot from a sharp angle was easily thwarted at the near post.

    But fans in attendance would get what they came for in the 87th minute, when Messi picked up a deflected pass just outside the penalty area and fired his left-foot shot hard and low across his body into the bottom-right corner.

    Just two minutes later Argentina were awarded a free kick in the same spot, and Messi again converted, this time around the wall into the bottom-left corner.

    What does it mean? Argentina now two games away from history

    With this result, Argentina are now unbeaten in their past 35 games dating back to their loss in the 2019 Copa America semi-final against Brazil. 

    Italy holds the record at 37 games without a loss – which they set just last year. Argentina's next two games will be in the World Cup against Saudi Arabia and Mexico, and if they make it through unscathed, they will play Poland for the new record.

    Messi the super sub

    Despite only playing 35 minutes, Messi led all players with five shots, four shots on target and three successful dribbles. Only Alvarez (three) created more chances than Messi's two, and he scored two goals for his second consecutive international fixture after also netting a double against Honduras this past weekend.

    Reid struggles with Argentinian physicality

    Bobby Reid had a difficult outing down the left-hand side, being credited with only two duels won from 11 tries – the lowest percentage on the pitch. He also had a passing accuracy of 77 per cent, which was one of the lowest marks from either side, while attempting no shots and creating no chances.

    What's next? 

    Argentina will take their unbeaten streak into the World Cup, where they will play Saudi Arabia first up. Jamaica do not have any fixtures scheduled until March's CONCACAF Nations League.

  • Pulisic 'not panicked' by United States form ahead of World Cup Pulisic 'not panicked' by United States form ahead of World Cup

    Christian Pulisic is "not panicked" about the United States' form ahead of the World Cup despite a winless international break.

    In the USA's final warm-up games for Qatar 2022, a poor 2-0 loss to Japan in Dusseldorf was followed by a limp goalless draw with Saudi Arabia in Murcia on Tuesday.

    It means Gregg Berhalter's side will go into the finals with just one victory in their past five matches.

    With Gio Reyna also suffering an injury scare against Saudi Arabia, this was not a successful camp for the United States.

    But captain Pulisic pushed back on concerns around the team's performances, even if he acknowledged the need for improvement in the final third.

    "We had a pretty good first half," the Chelsea forward stated. "I think we had a couple of half-chances where we created some things.

    "But I felt like we lost it a bit at the start of the second half, and they got a little bit of rhythm. We have to do more to figure out what we are going to do to create chances at the end of the day.

    "There are definitely some positives to take from the game, and a clean sheet is always good. I'm not panicked at all.

    "We have a fresh slate going into the World Cup, and we're going to give it everything that we have."

    The USA play Wales, England and Iran in Group B in Qatar.

  • Portugal 0-1 Spain: Late Morata goal steals place at Nations League Finals Portugal 0-1 Spain: Late Morata goal steals place at Nations League Finals

    Alvaro Morata's late goal gave Spain a 1-0 victory over Portugal and snatched a place at the Nations League Finals from their hosts in Braga.

    Spain needed to win to leapfrog Fernando Santos' side atop Group A2 but had looked set to be frustrated, with Portugal enjoying the better of the first-half opportunities.

    However, substitutions from Luis Enrique after the break changed the game, and Nico Williams' header across goal was smashed in by Morata to steal a precious victory.

    The dramatic win means Spain will join Croatia, Italy and the Netherlands at next year's tournament, with Portugal left to rue missed chances and sloppy defending in the closing stages.

     

© 2022 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.