Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp insists it is too early to declare his side are “out of the woods” in terms of eradicating the inconsistencies which have blighted their season.
The midweek victory over West Ham made it three wins in succession, extended their unbeaten run to five matches, and maintained their outside chance of sneaking into the top four.
On Sunday at home to Tottenham, Liverpool have a chance to win a fourth league game in a row for only the second time this season – that came in November and December and was separated by the World Cup – but Klopp said it would be wrong to assume everything had now clicked back into place.
“It is, for me, too early to speak about consistency,” he said.
“Winning three games is not for me consistent, it is good but can only be the start of something.
“It is about consistency you show in performances even more than results. For the outside world it is the result but for us it must be performances because that is what we work with.
“I am happy with that in the moment because in all the games, as different as they were, I saw a lot of things we want to see in the games and that is then really good.
“There is always something to improve and that’s fine, that’s what we try to do as well.
“I am absolutely OK with the moment but it is not that I already trust ourselves that much to say ‘that’s it now, we are out of the woods’ because this season gave us a few lessons I didn’t want to learn, but learned.
“We have to be super-aggressive, super-greedy and show that the most important prize in football is the three points at the weekend and that’s all we have to be focused on.”
Consistency has certainly returned to Klopp’s team selection as he has made just one change over the course of the last four matches and that was the precautionary resting of Ibrahima Konate for Wednesday’s victory over the Hammers.
Coincidentally it was his replacement at centre-back Joel Matip who scored the winner but Konate is likely to return at Anfield on Sunday.
But Klopp acknowledges having a stable team has led to better baseline performances.
“We didn’t change because we won the game before, we didn’t change because we set the team up slightly differently and wanted to give the boys the chance to find some rhythm and get used to different things,” he added.
“Number two is I said the ticket into this team will always be the readiness to defend and to counter-press and I like a lot of that what I saw.
“And if you say that you have to give the credit for it as well, so you can buy the ticket again.
“What it created was a situation in training where the boys who didn’t start showed properly up so we could have changed quite a lot because they really knock on the door.
“The difference is we had time to train.
“When you have time to train they can show up because in a normal week with three games you have recovery and the only guys who train are the ones who didn’t play the game before and the next day is second-day recovery for the guys who played.”