Jurgen Klopp, left, and Antonio Conte shake hands at the end of Saturday’s match (Jon Super/PA)

Conte believes Klopp “wanted to find an excuse” with Tottenham criticism

Antonio Conte says Jurgen Klopp was looking for an “excuse or an alibi” when he criticised Tottenham’s style of play following their 1-1 draw on Saturday.

Spurs were more than worthy of their point after they put in a resilient defensive display to stop the title chasers and they could easily have left Anfield with all three points had they been more clinical in attack.

Klopp, clearly frustrated at dropping two points in the title race, said afterwards: “I don’t like this kind of football, but that is my problem. I cannot coach it.”

Conte claimed his counterpart was trying to find excuses and should have kept his focus on his own team.

“Jurgen is an intelligent person, very clever,” the Italian said.

“He was a bit frustrated after the game, but at the same time for every coach it is important to learn to be focused on your team, not the opponent.

“It means you want to find an excuse or an alibi because your job didn’t work or something was wrong.

“I have respect for Jurgen and I know he respects me a lot and this is a good chance for him and me to learn that during the game you never have to speak about your opponent. It is important to be focused on your team.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Saturday, May 7, 2022: Tottenham Hotspur's manager Antonio Conte during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Tottenham Hotspur FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

“Honestly, for the coach it is not simple after the game, you have to try to keep your head cool.

“Sometimes it is not easy and many times if you remember this season I was disappointed with the result and myself and my players.

“When we lost against Burnley if you remember I gave to myself the fault of the defeat. Sometimes we are a bit frustrated, especially at the end of the season when a bad result can change an important target for you.”