Jurgen Klopp was understandably a happy man after Saturday’s match, back above Manchester United into second place, plus creating a gap of seven points to those outside the Champions League places.
However, he does want more from his team and says that even at two goals up ‘I did feel we had to control the game better’.
Liverpool were patient as they totally dominated possession and Jurgen Klopp says it has taken time but both the crowd and fans are now buying into the fact that at times they may have to wait for the first goal.
Newcastle didn’t do a massive amount wrong on either goal, more a case of the opportunity opening up for the scousers to attack at pace in numbers, with good moves producing good goals.
However, the Liverpool boss does accept that the key moment in the match was probably when Newcastle had their one real effort on goal, especially the timing of it.
Mohamed connecting just outside the box, just on the stroke of half-time, and the ball sailing into the top corner…only for Karius to pull off a fantastic save.
Jurgen Klopp says “For sure, if the ball is in it changes the game’ and that the timing of it would have been ‘perfect moment’ for Newcastle.
Being able to speak after a win, Klopp says he was pleased that his keeper had the one chance to show his quality, as life at a top club often means there is a lot of doing nothing for your goalkeeper.
Whether an equaliser then would have changed the outcome is obviously an unknown but it would certainly have given Newcastle hope – plus the defending had been decent before Salah scored five minutes before the break.
Always going to be difficult for Rafa and his players and next Saturday against Southampton is the big one, Newcastle definitely need more than one effort at goal and I’m sure the tactics will reflect that, Liverpool having taken away most of Southampton’s quality players these past few years.
“I often forget the result during the game, so even though we were 2-0 up I did feel we had to control the game better.
“But then when you step out on the pitch, you realise the wind, so it was difficult to do the right thing in the right moment.
“We scored two wonderful goals and for sure should have had a penalty but didn’t.
“Newcastle defended really well and are a good team with quality.
“We lost a few balls we don’t usually lose and Roberto Firmino didn’t have much support. It caused a few problems but not too many.”
‘How important was the stunning Karius save from Mohamed Diame just before half-time?’
“I wouldn’t say that we would have had no chance afterwards to win the game, but for sure, if the ball is in it changes the game.
“What was it, the 45th minute roundabout? So Newcastle would have said ‘perfect moment’, but for us it would have been exactly the opposite.
“It is exactly the life of a top class goalkeeper; if you are at a top team, you have not a lot to do but when you have something to do you need to be there…he was there.
“It is better that Newcastle had the finish and he could make the save, than if they couldn’t have shot the ball at the goal, because then nobody speaks about the goalkeeper.
“It was fantastic, it was like scoring to be honest.”
‘Greater patience and calm in the team and crowd?’
“It’s nice – the faith and the trust of the crowd improved. You always have to earn things like this and with a few performances we earned it.
“I think people are now more convinced that it can happen at one moment in the game than they were before. That helps massively. That’s what I meant when I said we have to create this situation together.
“I would have been happier in the last 10 minutes if we had kept the ball constantly. They didn’t attack so why try to play through balls? There’s absolutely no reason because you don’t have to take any risks.
“We are on the way to doing that. This team is obviously always on the front foot to score the next goal, but we adapted to the situation as a team. The crowd wer really brilliant.”
Stats from BBC Sport:
Liverpool 2 Newcastle 0
Liverpool: Salah 40, Sane 55
Possession was Liverpool 71% Newcastle 29%
Total shots were Liverpool 14 Newcastle 7
Shots on target were Liverpool 3 Newcastle 2
Corners were Liverpool 8 Newcastle 3
Referee: Graham Scott
Dubravka, Yedlin, Lascelles, Lejeune, Dummett, Murphy (Perez 84), Diame, Merino (Hayden 73), Kenedy, Atsu, Gayle (Joselu 66)
Darlow, Manquillo, Clark, Ritchie
Crowd: 53,287 (Newcastle 3,000)
(To read the match ratings for Newcastle players at Anfield go HERE )
(To read Alan Shearer’s instant reaction to the game HERE)
(Instant NUFC fan/writer reaction to Liverpool 2 Newcastle 0 – Read it HERE)