LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Sunday, September 24, 2023: Liverpool's manager Jürgen Klopp celebrates with Dominik Szoboszlai after the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and West Ham United FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Jurgen Klopp plays down “luxury” claim over Liverpool midfield options

With Ryan Gravenberch making his Anfield debut and Thiago still on his way back, Jurgen Klopp insists Liverpool need all of their midfield options.

The Reds remain unbeaten after a week of back-to-back 3-1 wins, following up another of the same scoreline against Wolves by overcoming LASK and West Ham.

Sunday brought a comfortable victory over West Ham to make it seven games without defeat this season, keeping up the pressure at the top of the Premier League.

It came on a day that saw Klopp send Gravenberch on for his Anfield bow and goalscorer Diogo Jota, Cody Gakpo and Wataru Endo also come off the bench.

Missing were Thiago and Trent Alexander-Arnold, while Harvey Elliott went unused, with Alexis Mac Allister, Dominik Szoboszlai and Curtis Jones the first-choice trio at present.

But asked in his post-match interview with BBC Sport if he saw it as a “luxury” of options, Klopp dismissed it as necessary.

“Luxury…it’s what we need,” he replied.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Sunday, September 24, 2023: Liverpool's Curtis Jones (R) and Alexis Mac Allister celebrate their side's second goal during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and West Ham United FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

“There are four competitions out there, and believe me, I spoke [with David Moyes] about that as well, David had that last year, constantly Thursday-Sunday is a tough one.

“If you play Champions League you might play Tuesday from time to time and then Saturday or Sunday, whatever.

“The difference here now is 100 percent clear, between Thursday and Sunday you don’t have a lot of time.

“We need to get used to that. For that we need a full squad, definitely.

“I spoke about that after the game. I loved the impact of the players when they come on, the positivity of all the players who came on.

“[To] really get the rhythm as quick as possible and make difference is just top class.

“It happened now a few times and we have to keep that until the end of the season.”

Szoboszlai has now started all six games in the Premier League while Mac Allister, Elliott and Jones have largely shared the minutes for various reasons.

But as Klopp notes, he will need the likes of Endo, Gravenberch, Thiago and Stefan Bajcetic in the weeks and months to come, with a prime example being Liverpool’s next game.

Leicester are visitors in the League Cup and, having made 11 changes for the Europa League opener against LASK and eight again on Sunday, the manager is likely to rotate heavily again.

That “luxury,” or so it was put, is of paramount importance if Liverpool plan to go all the way on four fronts.