BERLIN — Jurgen Klopp said he is “really happy” with his options in the current Liverpool squad after a trio of signings, but admits that injuries are yet to affect his team selection.
So far this summer, the Reds have brought in Mohamed Salah for a club-record fee and signed Andrew Robertson and Dominic Solanke to add further depth to the squad.
Klopp’s comments come after sources told ESPN FC that Liverpool were beginning to accept RB Leipzig’s unwillingness to sell midfielder Naby Keita at any price, and the Bundesliga club’s coach Ralph Hasenhuttl saying there was “zero” chance he’d be sold to the Reds.
Liverpool produced an impressive attacking display in a 3-0 win over Hertha Berlin on Saturday, and Klopp was asked after the match whether he thought some were ignoring the business the Merseyside club have already done this summer.
“That’s exactly how it is,” he told a news conference. “We are not where we want to be yet, but that is what preseason is for.
“We have to work really hard now, because we’ve got a long, long journey ahead.
“In this moment, it’s good that everyone looks really positive, in tune, and that’s how it should be. The new players are maybe better than people thought they will be. I think we said it early that we want to build on the squad from last year, and that’s what we’ve tried to do.
“For the moment, we’re really happy. We don’t have many injuries now, which is the best news and if we can stay fit, we can be very strong.
“Unfortunately, the other teams are also really pretty strong in England, so we have no choice but to be at our highest.”
Liverpool maintained their unbeaten record in preseason with the dominant victory over Hertha at the historic Olympiastadion.
Dominic Solanke played a significant role in Liverpool’s first two goals, netting the opener and then winning back possession in the build-up to Georginio Wijnaldum’s 38th-minute strike.
For the third goal, Philippe Coutinho and Salah combined perfectly, with the new signing netting his third goal in four appearances since joining from Roma.
Coutinho, playing in a central-midfield role after half-time, made a pin-point through ball into the path of Salah, who ran through on goal and lofted the ball over the onrushing Rune Jarstein.
“I think players like this understand each other,” Klopp added.” It’s a good thing with having players of this quality.
“The pass from Phil was very nice and the finish from Salah was not too bad also.”
The day prior to the friendly, which celebrated the 125th anniversary of both clubs, Klopp put his players through three training sessions at the team’s Rottach-Egern base.
“I was pleased but it was what I expected,” the Liverpool manager said of the performance. “We did those three sessions on Friday because we wanted it to feel difficult for the boys.
“In the second half we only scored one goal but we managed the game which is very important, especially when players want to show what they can do. It was really mature. I am absolutely happy with this.”
The match also marked the return of Sadio Mane, one of Liverpool’s sparks from last season before going down with a season-ending injury in April.
Liverpool will return to their base in Rottach-Egern before travelling to Munich to compete in the Audi Cup along with Bayern Munich, Atletico Madrid and Napoli on Aug. 1 and 2.
Glenn is ESPN FC’s Liverpool correspondent. You can follow him on Twitter: @GlennPrice94.