LONDON, ENGLAND - Sunday, January 23, 2022: Liverpool's Fabio Henrique Tavares 'Fabinho' celebrates after scoring the third goal during the FA Premier League match between Crystal Palace FC and Liverpool FC at Selhurst Park. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Jurgen Klopp explains tactical tweak that’s seen Fabinho profit

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp admits matchwinner Fabinho would have scored more goals in his career had he afforded the midfielder more opportunity.

The Brazil international’s fifth goal in seven matches for the Reds five minutes before half-time helped his side grind out a 1-0 victory over Burnley in testing conditions at Turf Moor.

None of his teammates have scored more since the turn of the year, and Klopp said part of the uptick had been a change in tactics.

“He would have probably scored more goals for Liverpool if I would have put him in the box around offensive set-pieces,” said the Reds boss.

“Only recently we put him in and he scores, a great goal. The space where the ball came to Sadio (Mane) was the plan but not at that height, so Sadio made absolutely the most of it – great header, great deflection, timing is perfect and Fab is there to score a counter-pressing goal in the six-yard box.”

BURNLEY, ENGLAND - Sunday, February 13, 2022: Liverpool's manager Jürgen Klopp celebrates after the FA Premier League match between Burnley FC and Liverpool FC at Turf Moor. Liverpool won 1-0. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

It was far from being the kind of performance expected of Liverpool but it was nevertheless a crucial one in ensuring they kept pace with leaders Manchester City, whose advantage was pegged back to nine points having played one match more.

Klopp praised his players for the way they handled what could have been a potential upset against the Premier League’s bottom side.

“I’m absolutely delighted with the way we played the circumstances, it was so tricky,” he added.

“Only when you stood on the pitch could you feel the extent of the wind, it was ridiculous.

“The boys stuck with it and over the years have learned to deal with the circumstances.

“We asked ourselves to use it instead of suffering from it. A really difficult game, yes.

“They had their moments but I think it felt they had more moments than they actually had because of the late offside flag when Ali (Alisson Becker) made saves he didn’t need to. That is the way it is.”

Burnley boss Sean Dyche was disappointed his side did not make more of the opportunities they created, with January signing Wout Weghorst, in particular, squandering a couple.

“Frustrating with that one, I thought we were very good defensively and in attack,” he said.

“We created some golden chances today, we’ve got to continue doing that and we have got to take them.

“There were two or three, against this level of opposition, that are big chances today.”