Jurgen Klopp has revealed the “clear agreement” Liverpool made in January that changed their approach, with a new outlook seeing only one loss in the last 18.
Seven of those clean sheets have come in the last nine games, with only two goals conceded in that time, and Klopp explained after victory at the Emirates how a meeting soon after the turn of the year prompted a switch in emphasis.
The manager held a meeting with his squad towards the beginning of January that has led to a defiant response, with Klopp admitting: “We had to agree on defence first.”
“That’s a clear agreement of ours, a clear agreement,” he told reporters.
“We had to readjust it, to be honest, early January. We had to agree on defence first.
“Because otherwise, you are some team, any team or whatever. You win or you lose, you win or you lose.
“Today we won 2-0, but we had games where we won 1-0 and we wouldn’t have won these games if we were not defensively spot on.
“The last line in general was, today, incredible. Ali saved us again, but what the two full-backs did was absolutely insane.
“I said it already before, if one of you still thinks that Trent cannot defend then sorry, you have no idea about football.
“Everybody who says that, it’s madness.
“To play against Martinelli, what Hendo did, running 50 times, because second half we defended better and the only real option they had was to play the diagonal balls for Martinelli.
“Then we had these one-on-one situations, these situations were the winner today.
“Yes, we still needed to score goals, but that we defended them in these situations, that was essential.”