‘Good organisation and a big heart’ were key to Liverpool’s victory against Paris Saint-Germain, according to Jürgen Klopp after he watched his side record a thrilling 3-2 success in their opening Champions League game of the season.

Roared on by a raucous Anfield crowd, the Reds’ first-half dominance yielded two goals via Daniel Sturridge – who replaced Roberto Firmino in the starting XI due to the Brazilian’s eye injury – and a James Milner penalty.

However, Thomas Meunier reduced the deficit five minutes before the break and despite the hosts controlling the majority of the second period, the French champions drew level through Kylian Mbappe late on.

But there was further drama still to unfold as Firmino struck a dramatic winner in stoppage-time to secure a memorable result for Liverpool.

Afterwards, Klopp reflected on his side’s performance in his post-match press conference, discussed the efforts of Sturridge and reflected on Firmino’s decisive impact from the bench.

Read on for a summary of what the manager had to say…

On his reaction to Liverpool’s performance…

It was good, really good in all departments pretty much. It is so difficult to defend them, but we did. Good organisation and a big heart is always a good combination for defending. All 11 players were involved in that. A good performance against an outstandingly strong opponent; it was necessary we played good. The atmosphere was fantastic, so special to do these things in this stadium. It was nice.

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On Sturridge and Firmino’s impact…

Great performance. Great performance of Daniel. The three in midfield did an outstanding job, but they only can do it when the two wingers in how we play and the No.9 are helping in all these situations to keep the formation compact. It was fantastic. I said to Daniel before the game he is the best shape since I’ve known him, physically, and now he had to use it – and that’s what he did. A super game, a super goal. And we then had the opportunity to bring on Bobby Firmino. There was no chance yesterday, absolutely no chance today before [training] and then this morning he came in said, ‘I am fine, I can open the eye again!’ so it’s good, it helps! It was good.

On whether he was surprised by PSG's approach...

No, I expected the biggest problems you can have, to be honest! When I saw the line-up, it was clear they wanted to try and bring all the big ones – the front four was impressive and then a little system change with Neymar on the left wing. I’m not sure, but maybe for the first time this season, plus Di Maria in the half-space – it makes life quite uncomfortable, to be honest. It was a good idea, but we dealt with it pretty well. No, I was not surprised. I am not the best in remembering chances of the opponent because I am too focused on my team, but I don’t remember a lot [of chances], to be honest. In the first half we had to block a ball or whatever, then the counter-attack with Draxler in the second half, and we defended really well. It was good, we did well.

On why Firmino began the game on the bench…

How I said, the day before yesterday it was no chance, yesterday it didn’t look really well and we had only one session, which we used, and that was this morning. Bobby tested a little bit and then he went in and you think it’s the moment when you have to show faith in the squad. Yes, when you have Bobby Firmino available, you actually always think ‘come on, bring him’, but it was nice to see how Daniel performed tonight and he paid 100 per cent back. That’s so cool for him, for us, such a big, important sign. And how I said, bringing Bobby in after 70 minutes is a nice tool, to be honest, I really like that. So it was good.

On whether winning in such fashion helps the team’s development further…

I think I said before the game, the cool development of our club is when you hear Liverpool plays PSG, you don’t think we are without any chance anymore and I would say one, two, three years ago, everybody would have thought we cannot climb there. That’s good, but that’s of course because of last year and because of the start of the next season maybe, and because of the players we have, because of the football we played. But it’s still so unbelievably difficult. It’s not that you can plan it or whatever, you see what the boys make of the match plan – it’s extraordinary, it’s outstanding, to be honest. 

One of them a yard less tonight, and game over. But they were so in the game and it’s not only that we fight a lot – and I love that – but we played football as well, and that looked really confident. We look now much more tuned than it maybe was in the past. So we played a midfield who played a lot of times last season together, that was the reason for that tonight, it was clear that Hendo would come back and what a brilliant performance of him. Physical-wise, so good, because obviously as we know that the players after the World Cup normally struggle a bit… he is ready now and that’s really important for us. We didn’t learn a lot tonight which we didn’t know before, but it’s nice to see that we can do it. That’s it.

On whether producing such a performance just three days after winning at Tottenham Hotspur proves his side have moved up another level…

I would like to have the answer for that but actually I have no clue. I don’t know what it has to do with the Tottenham game. Yes it helps, each victory helps, but if you play against PSG you have to step up, you have to reach the next level. We play at 95 per cent, we lose 5-0, we play at 100 per cent, we can win the game – that’s it. Denying them so often tonight, I don’t think a lot of teams did that so far. How I said, I didn’t remember a lot of clear chances, but maybe when I watch it again I will see them! It was just really good defending, but you cannot defend over 95 minutes, they will have the ball. 

We had our little breaks today when they had the ball because they had to deal with our passing as well. We used the wings and that’s what we wanted in the second half, we said it at half-time. So they closed the centre, the counter-attacks they had in the first half were when we passed the ball through. I think Joe and Virgil tried, lost patience and tried, and we are not ready for that, their formation is better than our formation in that moment, so they pass the next ball and then they had the counter-attacks. Then when we played it around, clear passes, good passes in behind their line, Trent had the ball, Robbo had the ball, and we were really difficult to defend in that moment. That’s the next step, that if something works we are now able to stick to it. I would say last year we thought we need to show we can do something else as well. It’s about winning the football games and that’s what we did tonight.

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