Jurgen Klopp believes the "sensational" rapport between Liverpool's players will go along way to deterring them from seeking new opportunities elsewhere.

Liverpool opted to remain quiet during the close-season transfer market as they successfully focused on keeping together the core of the side that won the Champions League.

LaLiga giants Real Madrid have been intermittently linked to forwards Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane but the latter, scorer of two goals this term, recently gave an interview in which he spoke of being entirely happy with the Reds.

Klopp said: "First and foremost we have to make sure it stays like this, that we are all like this with each other.

"We have a wonderful atmosphere inside the group, a sensational atmosphere at Melwood, we all know the atmosphere we have at Anfield.

"No matter where we go in the world people are happy to see us, at least our supporters are. That's absolutely special but we worked hard for that and we have to keep that. How can we keep that? Focus on the next step, trust the next step, improve, try to fight as much as you can, run as far as you can, jump as high as you can, all that stuff.

"That's what we have to do, then it can stay like this. It's nice. This club is wonderful, it was always wonderful, just the atmosphere was not always like this because of different things.

"Now we have quite a good basis and we have to use it and improve it, and then the boys have no reason to leave.

"If they look left and right and see the quality players they have in the dressing room and, on top of that, they like each other, it helps a lot. It's not the most important thing, but it helps a lot.

"They want to use the opportunity the club gave this team and I'm happy about that, obviously."

Liverpool won each of their opening four Premier League games before the international break and are now preparing to entertain Newcastle United at Anfield on Saturday.

Avoiding defeat would extend the club's unbeaten home run to 43 league games.

Klopp asked his players to forget about the streak and instead focus on replicating the levels they reached in last month's 3-1 victory over Arsenal.

"Each team could have [beaten us] but in most of the games we were better and deserve the win or three points or draw," the German said.

"So that's good, but all I'm concerned about really is how can we be again in a similar or a better mood or shape than we were against Arsenal because that was, attitude-wise, a really high level, the highest level to be honest.

"That's what we have to do again, not worry about what happened in the last two and a half years."

Naby Keita is close to returning for Liverpool but Jurgen Klopp is unsure when Alisson will be ready to replace Adrian in goal.

Alisson has been out of action since he suffered a calf injury in the Reds' opening 4-1 Premier League win over Norwich City in August.

Klopp initially indicated the European champions are expected to be without the Brazil international for the "next few weeks".

Speaking ahead of Saturday's home Premier League game against Newcastle United, Klopp issued an update on Alisson and midfielder Keita.

"Funnily enough, we had lunch again so he looked good," Klopp told reporters of Alisson's progress.

"He's improving but as normal we cannot put any pressure on it. It was a really serious injury in the calf and it is now much better of course.

"That's good for us, good for him, but we don't know exactly. The target was always after the next international break he could be ready, but we don't know.

"That's no pressure on it. Hopefully everything will be fine for the rest of the season, that's the plan.

"Naby is close, much closer than Ali. I think he could be in training when we come back from Napoli next week [in the Champions League].

"Clyney [Nathaniel Clyne] and [teenage striker] Paul Glatzel are obviously far away still but doing big steps. It looks quite okay at the moment."

Liverpool are top of the Premier League table having taken maximum points from their first four games of the season before the international break, a run that saw Klopp claim the August manager of the month award.

Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane were among the Reds stars given a break from international duty, which was welcomed by Klopp.

"It was perfect for the boys who didn't have to go," Klopp added. "There's always that challenge.

"I'm really happy boys being named for their national team, it's really nice, a big honour and all that stuff but I've said it 500 times - if you see the players who didn't have to go this time, for different reasons, everything is different.

"It's in a very intense period to have five or six days off. They train, they always train, but they don't have to be here and we do proper football sessions because usually we only have three players here and it makes no sense, this time we could have had five.

"Could have trained but it still makes no sense - then Sadio and Mo would not have had the time off they needed. It's really tough always to have two games when we speak about the international break, then they have another week with two games which is not easy.

"But we can't change that so we don't think too much about it. They are refreshed, that's how it is, hopefully we can use that."

Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Virgil van Dijk are the three finalists for The Best FIFA Men's Player award.

FIFA announced a 10-man shortlist for the gong in July and, following the initial voting period, the final three have been revealed.

Frenkie de Jong, Matthijs de Ligt, Harry Kane, Eden Hazard, Sadio Mane, Kylian Mbappe and Mohamed Salah were the seven players cut from the initial list.

Liverpool defender Van Dijk is the favourite of many after playing a vital role in the Reds' Champions League triumph and their Premier League title challenge – finishing just a point behind Manchester City.

He was recognised for his exploits just last week, when he was named UEFA's Player of the Year, beating Messi and Ronaldo to the prize.

The Netherlands international also helped his country to the final of the Nations League, only for a Ronaldo-inspired Portugal to lift the inaugural title.

Ronaldo also enjoyed success at club level, helping Juventus cruise to an eighth successive Scudetto, finishing as their top scorer across all competitions with 28 goals.

Messi's numbers dwarfed Ronaldo's, though, as the Barcelona star scored 51 goals in total, including 36 from 29 starts in LaLiga, with Barca retaining their title.

Those goal-scoring exploits won Messi the European Golden Shoe and, on top of being LaLiga's most prolific player, he also set up 13 goals, a haul only matched by Pablo Sarabia.

Messi's Barca team-mate Marc-Andre ter Stegen is among the three finalists for the goalkeeper award, with City's Ederson and Alisson of Liverpool also in the hunt.

And there is a distinct Premier League feel to the final three of the coaches' award, with Jurgen Klopp, Pep Guardiola and Mauricio Pochettino all in the running.

The winners will be announced on September 23.

Jurgen Klopp hailed Virgil van Dijk's UEFA Men's Player of the Year award as a prize for all of Liverpool's players.

Van Dijk enjoyed a supreme 2018-19 campaign, helping Liverpool to Champions League glory and captaining Netherlands to the Nations League final.

The former Southampton defender has maintained his form heading into this season and edged out superstars Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi to the honour in Monaco on Thursday.

Klopp was quick to laud Van Dijk's individual displays but pointed out his triumph was one that would not be possible without all of Liverpool's squad.

"Brilliant! It's really big. I wanted to call him immediately, but he had to go on stage. I'm so happy for him," Klopp told Liverpool's official website.

"I'm happy for us as well because he knows that without the boys around him, he cannot win that prize.

"It's a prize for all of us – but we send our big man there to get it. It's really rare for a defender. Yes, we all love goals – we want to score them and see them – but more and more and more people get excited about defending.

"Virg is an exceptional defender, in the moment 100 per cent the best defender in the world, so he deserves that prize absolutely.

"It's now the icing on the cake of the Champions League campaign last year."

The awards ceremony took place after the Champions League draw, in which Liverpool were pitted against Napoli, Salzburg and Genk in the group stage.

Van Dijk's team-mate Alisson picked up the Champions League Goalkeeper of the Season accolade and Klopp had no doubt the Brazilian was worthy.

"I would say well, well, well deserved. He made exceptional saves," Klopp said.

"In the first season with us and immediately winning the Champions League. What a year he had, he won the Champions League, won the Copa America and now is the best goalie of last year."

Jurgen Klopp is anticipating an "emotional" Napoli after Champions League holders Liverpool were drawn against Carlo Ancelotti's side again in this season's group stage.

Liverpool, who beat Tottenham to claim their sixth title in Europe's elite club competition, were pitted with Napoli, Genk and Salzburg in Group E.

Napoli have become a familiar foe over recent seasons, having been placed in the same group as the Reds last season.

The Serie A side came out on top in their first meeting in October, but a 1-0 win at Anfield in the last group outing secured Liverpool's progression behind Paris Saint-Germain.

Ancelotti's team – who beat Liverpool 3-0 in pre-season – have invested in their squad in the transfer window, bringing in Hirving Lozano for a club-record fee while defender Kostas Manolas has joined from Roma.

Real Madrid's James Rodriguez and Inter's Mauro Icardi have also been targeted and although Liverpool will be favourites to top Group E, Klopp knows his side cannot underestimate the Napoli threat.

"Napoli again! I don't know how often I've now played against Napoli, but they're obviously a very experienced side," Klopp told Liverpool's official website.

"Napoli are just a really good side. The home game we played [in last season's Champions League] was one of the best games we played because it was so rock solid.

"In the pre-season games, when we won 5-0 in Dublin [in 2018] I was not interested in the result. Now this year we lost 3-0 and that's not too interesting, but you see how good they are.

"Carlo has such experience and has won the competition so often [three times]. When they went out last year, it was pretty close, so they will remember that and it will be emotional, I am pretty sure."

Though Liverpool and Napoli are likely to battle it out for the top spots, Klopp feels Genk and Salzburg – Europa League semi-finalists in 2017-18 and the club where Sadio Mane and Naby Keita enjoyed their breakthroughs – will present stern opposition.

"With the other two teams, I know how people will say these are the two smaller teams of the group, they are not," Klopp added.

"Of course, Salzburg are famous for bringing through new players, like they did with Sadio and Naby – they've found a lot of others, too. It will be really interesting."

Liverpool have pledged to seek a resolution with Bobby Duncan after describing allegations made against them by the teenage forward's agent as "inaccurate" and "inflammatory".

Duncan's representative Saif Rubie claimed his client wants to leave the club and that Liverpool's moves to block a transfer away has taken a toll on the 18-year-old's wellbeing.

Rubie singled out Reds sporting director Michael Edwards for criticism and alleged the treatment of Duncan – who is Steven Gerrard's cousin – showed "zero consideration" for the player's mental health.

Liverpool have strongly refuted Rubie's claims with a spokesperson stating: "Liverpool Football Club is aware of and disappointed by the unattributed comments and unfounded allegations that have been made in the media regarding one of our players.

"As the interests of the player in question are not best served by either inaccurate speculation, inflammatory statements or public discourse, we will be making no further comment.

"We will, however, continue our efforts to work privately with the player to find resolution in the best interests of all involved."

Duncan joined the Reds in August 2018 and, after scoring a crucial equaliser in Liverpool Under-18s' victory over Manchester City in the FA Youth Cup final, he featured for Jurgen Klopp's first-team in pre-season friendlies.

"There has been a lot of things said the last few weeks regarding Bobby Duncan's future at Liverpool," read Rubie's statement, which was also shared - and later deleted - on Twitter by the youngster himself.

"It was recognised that Bobby wasn't happy at Liverpool for different reasons and Alex [Inglethorpe, Liverpool academy director] invited us to bring offers to the club for the exit of Bobby Duncan.

"We have been able to find clubs that were ready to take Bobby on a season-long loan with an option to buy for amounts of £1.5million upwards, which is a great return for the club on a player who will never play for the Liverpool first-team and who doesn't want to be there.

"The club and Michael Edwards specifically made it clear that that kind of deal wouldn't work.

"He [Duncan] has suffered some deep mental health issues with all the stress the club has put him under."

Duncan was Liverpool Under-18s' leading scorer in 2018-19, netting 32 goals in all competitions, but former Reds defender Jamie Carragher said success at a young age may have affected his expectations.

"I know Bobby and his family well, he's young and at that age we all want everything right now," Carragher tweeted in response to Rubie's statement.

"[He] played for the first team in pre-season which is a great start and he should try and develop this season and maybe make the bench in [the] Carabao Cup.

"That should be the advice you're giving him."

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has signed a new long-term contract at Liverpool, the Premier League club have confirmed.

The England midfielder joined Jurgen Klopp's side from Arsenal in August 2017 and has made 47 appearances in all competitions, scoring five goals.

Those numbers would likely be far greater had Oxlade-Chamberlain not suffered a serious knee injury during the 2018 Champions League semi-final versus Roma that all but ruled him out of last season.

"I'm really, really excited – it's been in the pipeline for a little while, so it's nice to finally get it done and just extend my time here, which I am really looking forward to,” the 26-year-old told Liverpool's official website

"I feel like I missed out on a year, which I obviously did, so it's really exciting for me to be able to sign. It's something that I feel is an opportunity to give that year back and make up for lost time – and hopefully put in some good performances to make amends for not being around last year."

Although the length of the contract was not officially disclosed, Oxlade-Chamberlain is reported to have signed terms that tie him to the Anfield club until 2023.

Following their support throughout his long road back to fitness, he feels a debt of gratitude to Liverpool fans.

"I can promise the supporters that I'll give them absolutely everything moving forward," he added, having been an unused substitute in June's Champions League final win over Tottenham.

"There might be times where I have bad games and good games and moments where it's not so good, but I'll always work through those moments and give my everything to correct them and keep pushing this team forward.

"I hope that I can do some special things like I did before I got injured and, most of all, be a part of this group of players that go on to hopefully win more things.

"I'm really excited to see what the future holds for us all and I look forward to seeing them every game moving forward."

Klopp's men have won their first two Premier League games this season and host Oxlade-Chamberlain's former club Arsenal on Saturday.

Jurgen Klopp revealed Liverpool could not afford to bring Philippe Coutinho back to Anfield as he backed the attacker to shine at Bayern Munich.

Coutinho's move to the Bundesliga champions was confirmed on Monday, the Brazil international joining on a season-long loan from Barcelona with Bayern holding an option to buy for €120million.

The 27-year-old had also been linked with a return to Liverpool, where he starred for five seasons before joining Barca.

Klopp said the European champions could not spend the money required to sign Coutinho, with Bayern paying an €8.5m loan fee and the star's wages.

"It sounds a bit strange, but we could not afford it," he said at the Sport Bild awards on Monday.

"We have already spent the money that we got for him."

Klopp backed Coutinho to shine for Bayern after struggling to have an impact at Barcelona.

"He's a great player, a great boy," the former Borussia Dortmund coach said.

"We were reluctant to sell him, but Barcelona forced us with money, so to speak.

"He is a player who can change games for the positive. It's not that nice for Dortmund, but it's a great transfer for Bayern and the Bundesliga."

Liverpool will again be without the injured Naby Keita when they visit Southampton in the Premier League on Saturday.

Guinea international Keita has not recovered in time from a hip muscle strain suffered before the UEFA Super Cup victory over Chelsea.

The midfielder was an unused substitute during last Friday's league win against Norwich City at Anfield and manager Jurgen Klopp confirmed there is no timescale for his return.

"[He's] not available. It's a muscle thing," Klopp said when asked about the 24-year-old at his pre-match news conference.

"We don't know exactly how long it will take, but he's not available."

Keita is not Liverpool's only fitness concern, with goalkeeper Adrian potentially set to join Alisson on the sidelines.

The Spaniard was left nursing a swollen ankle after a fan slipped and collided with him amid the on-pitch celebrations in Istanbul on Wednesday.

Klopp will have to carefully assess his troops ahead of a third game in eight days, a schedule that does not sit comfortably with the German.

"My plan when I heard about the fixtures was to win on Wednesday, to win on Saturday, then speak about it after that," he said.

"If you speak about it earlier it sounds like you're looking for excuses. I don't, we don't [want to make excuses].

"Was it right that we played on Friday and Chelsea on Sunday? No. That's the situation, we cannot change these things.

"We have no power. We can only accept it. Now we don't think about it, we don't think about Wednesday night, we think about Saturday.

"That's what we have to do - find a way to win the game. That's the reason why we go there and that's possible, so that's what we will try."

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp applauded the historic all-female team of officials that took charge of Wednesday's UEFA Super Cup, and he was convinced the Reds "would have won 6-0" had they worked as effectively as them.

Stephanie Frappart of France became the first female referee to officiate on a men's match in a major European final, with Italy's Manuela Nicolisi and Michelle O'Neill of the Republic of Ireland assisting.

The contest - which Liverpool won 5-4 on penalties following a 2-2 draw after extra time - certainly provided a test for the officials, with Christian Pulisic and Mason Mount correctly having a goal apiece disallowed for being marginally offside.

However, a penalty awarded to Chelsea was more controversial as Tammy Abraham appeared to go down after minimal contact from Liverpool goalkeeper Adrian.

Klopp was not impressed with that decision, though he is adamant Frappart and her team did well otherwise.

"I spoke to the refereeing team after the game [and said] that if we would have played like they whistled, then we would have won 6-0," Klopp told reporters.

"They played a brilliant game. I also said I wasn't happy with the penalty decision, as I'm still not sure, but it's not important any more.

"They were good, they were really good. There was pressure on them like hell. It was an historic moment and they stayed themselves, stayed calm and did what they had to do in a very difficult and intense game.

"I couldn't have more respect, it was a really brilliant performance."

Jurgen Klopp praised Roberto Firmino's unique qualities as he admitted starting Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain in the UEFA Super Cup win over Chelsea was a mistake.

Oxlade-Chamberlain started on the left of a front three in Istanbul, but was replaced by Brazil international Firmino at half-time on Wednesday.

The former Arsenal midfielder only made his return from a serious knee injury in April and is still working his way back after an impressive start to life at Liverpool, who claimed a 5-4 penalty shoot-out victory following a 2-2 draw with Chelsea.

Klopp admitted his decision to start Oxlade-Chamberlain was an error, however backed the 32-time England international to find his best form once more.

"I didn't say a lot to Ox, I don't think it was necessary. For Ox it was very important to have these minutes, it's a position he can play," he told a news conference.

"He can play much better than he did but that's how it is and after a long injury you have to find back the rhythm. In training it's already there and now in the game he had good moments but of course not enough for his quality.

"It was not about that, I knew it was a very, very intense game so it was clear that we have to make that decision because we didn't want to push him through, we want to give him the opportunity to perform, to shine if you want.

"In that position and the circumstances it was obviously not as possible as we would have wished, but that's then my mistake and not his mistake because I made the decision."

Firmino had a huge impact after being introduced, setting up Sadio Mane's equaliser and the attacker's extra-time goal, which was cancelled out by a Jorginho penalty.

Klopp hailed the Brazil forward and while he insisted there was depth in the central attacking position, the German admitted Firmino played the role like no-one else.

"Bobby Firmino is pretty vital, but Sadio Mane can play that position as well. Divock Origi played in that position really well," he said.

"They are all different, they all have different strengths, but I think for tonight when the opponent kind of learns from the game and gets used to what you do, then it's important that you can make a change and it was a big change because Bobby is different to all other players in the world, probably, in that position and it helped us a lot.

"For him, it was really, really intense. It was not the plan that he plays around 80 minutes, now he had to play it. You saw it was hard for him, he had pretty much no pre-season and played after one week. That was the problem for us a little bit, it's our third competitive game where we had to throw in everything to be on top of it after the pre-season we had.

"We know that we have to improve a lot of things, but a lot of things were good … we can play and we will play better football but for tonight it was only about winning and we did that. We found again a way to win the game – and that's big, really big, it feels incredibly big and I'm really happy about that."

Jurgen Klopp was delighted for Adrian after the goalkeeper's heroics helped Liverpool win the UEFA Super Cup against Chelsea.

Adrian made the only save from Tammy Abraham in a 5-4 penalty shoot-out win after the Premier League giants drew 2-2 in Istanbul on Wednesday.

With star goalkeeper Alisson injured, Adrian was making his first start for Liverpool and the Spaniard stepped up – much to the delight of Klopp.

"Adriaaaan! Like Rocky," the Liverpool manager told BT Sport, referencing the famous boxing films starring Sylvester Stallone. "What a story. He kept his nerves together.

"He's loud in the dressing room already. I don't think he's won a lot in his life so it's good for him to win it.

"He made some unbelievable saves, both keepers did, so I'm really happy for him."

Liverpool fell behind to an Olivier Giroud goal before Sadio Mane's brace had them ahead in extra time.

However, Jorginho's 101st-minute spot-kick brought Chelsea level, leading to the penalty shoot-out.

"It was a very difficult game for both teams. It was all about winning it and we did that in the end," Klopp said.

"Nobody in the stadium wanted extra time, it was a killer. I'm not sure about the penalty but who cares now.

"We started well then dropped off. We could talk about football but it's too late now. We had to fight and the boys did."

Liverpool are one UEFA Super Cup trophy away from equalling the hauls of Barcelona and AC Milan after overcoming Chelsea in a penalty shoot-out.

Champions League holders Liverpool claimed their fourth Super Cup thanks to Wednesday's 5-4 triumph on penalties in Istanbul.

Goalkeeper Adrian proved the hero for Liverpool, denying Chelsea's Tammy Abraham from the spot after the showdown ended 2-2 at the end of extra time.

Liverpool celebrated as they joined Real Madrid on four Super Cups, within touching distance of five-time winners Barca and Milan.

Adrian was thrilled to help Liverpool win the UEFA Super Cup against Chelsea on his first start for the club.

Deputising for the injured Alisson, Adrian denied Tammy Abraham to seal a 5-4 penalty shoot-out success for the European champions over Chelsea in Istanbul on Wednesday.

With Alisson expected to miss several weeks due to a calf injury sustained against Norwich City in last week's Premier League opener, Adrian will have more chances to impress.

And the former West Ham goalkeeper was delighted to have made an impact on his full Reds debut as Jurgen Klopp's side made up for losing the Community Shield to Manchester City on penalties.

"Welcome to Liverpool! It has been a crazy week," Adrian said to BT Sport. "I am happy for the team, with them it is easy.

"I am happy to win the trophy. I am really happy for the fans. It was a long game but in the end it was a great finish."

Adrian was able to make amends for conceding a penalty in extra time, Jorginho converting to make it 2-2 after the goalkeeper felled Abraham.

Replays appeared to indicate contact with the striker was minimal and Adrian disagreed with the decision made by Stephanie Frappart, who became the first female official to take charge of a major men's final.

"I tried to stop when I saw him. The striker is intelligent," Adrian added. 

"I touched him but he was looking for it. I told the referee I tried to stop but it doesn't matter.

"We got the title and have to enjoy tonight."

Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson accepted the Reds were not at their best against the Europa League winners but cited difficult conditions for their unimposing performance.

"It was tough. It is humid here - you can't tell on the TV," Henderson told BT Sport. "It was tough with extra time - a lot of the lads were struggling. We were trying to keep the ball and get a breather but it was a bit sloppy.

"Chelsea are a good side and this is not a great way for them to lose, like we did in the Community Shield. I'm delighted for Adrian, who is the hero tonight.

"We've got a big game on Saturday [against Southampton] so I'm delighted. We want to win as many trophies as possible. We'll take the trophy back and enjoy it, but we've got to focus on recovery for a big game on Saturday.

"We didn't play particularly well but we kept grinding in tough conditions, kept going. It's another trophy for us and it's important to keep winning. Hopefully we can continue this run of form now."

Adrian saved from Tammy Abraham as Liverpool beat Chelsea 5-4 on penalties to win the first all-English UEFA Super Cup following a 2-2 draw in Istanbul.

Olivier Giroud gave Frank Lampard's side a deserved first-half lead on Wednesday, but the introduction of Roberto Firmino as a half-time substitute changed the game for the Reds.

Firmino quickly set up Mane for the equaliser and, in the first period of extra time, the Senegal star smashed home from his team-mate's pass again before Jorginho equalised from the penalty spot.

But it was the European champions who triumphed in the shoot-out, Alisson's deputy Adrian denying Abraham with his right leg to secure victory for Jurgen Klopp's side.

Page 1 of 20
© 2018 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.