Jürgen Klopp discusses Luis Diaz's development and goalscoring potential

Press conferenceJürgen Klopp discusses Luis Diaz's development and goalscoring potential

By Glenn Price


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Jürgen Klopp believes it's only a matter of time before Luis Diaz finds a consistent run of goalscoring form for Liverpool.

The Colombia forward went close to adding to his Reds tally on a number of occasions during the opening-day draw with Fulham last weekend, including striking the woodwork with a fine curling effort.

During his pre-Crystal Palace press conference, Klopp explained how Diaz's comfort levels with the team's set-up and style of play has grown with a full pre-season under his belt.

Read on to see what the boss had to say...

On whether 'end product' is something he's working on with Diaz...

Not with Luis specifically. We don't take him out, 'Because the other two scored and you didn't, come on here, I show you how.' It's unnecessary. It's not even a problem, it's just the moment. But, of course, we do finishing and that helps him, like it helps the others. We spoke last week about it when Sadio left, everybody was, 'How can you play without Sadio?' In November, December everybody thought when he will score the next goal but he's starting all the time, so these kind of things. You just let it go. You see the situations he had, like the biggest chances are just unlucky – it is. He had these blocked moments already a couple of times but he's in a really good shape actually, he looks really good – and that's more important for me, that he's in these situations. Not that I tell him after the game, 'You should have scored here or there.' The boys know that in the moment when it happens. So, that's a normal process.

Video: Jürgen Klopp's pre-Crystal Palace press conference

On whether he views Diaz as a player who can get 10-15 goals in a season...

Definitely, that's his quality. But in the end, we need to see. But, of course, it's his potential, yeah.

On Diaz learning more about the team's principles...

It's just different. He improved definitely, of course, with understanding what we are doing, these kind of things. But that leads then a little bit to strange situations as well because we want to be flexible on the wings, stuff like this, and that means he has to be slightly more inside. But then you realise for him it's quite good if he stays longer outside and these kind of things, so we get used to that. That will help. Unfortunately, it's always like this, a learning process, [it] never goes overnight. And then the next thing is it's his first pre-season with us and they all – I'm not sure if 'suffer' is the right word – but they all feel it, feel the pre-season. And when he arrived, he came out of a full season. But he will benefit from a full pre-season obviously because he was not on international duty in the summer, so he started on the first day with us, could do all the sessions since then – that's the most important thing. And all the rest will come.

The problem is we sit here and talk about two games, whatever, didn't score or these kind of things. But it's, of course, in the long term not a problem at all, it's about just being prepared, fighting through these moments like that, like now the first game and now the second game will not be easy – it's at home, fantastic, can't wait for that, by the way, it's Monday night, great, all the things are positive. And now we have to go. The quality that he obviously has and the potential that he obviously has, if you then can put really miles, kilometres, whatever, in your legs during a pre-season, that will help you in the long term. That's what will happen but we are not in the long term, we are now and that's why I think for him, of course, just one goal and then we go from there.

On turning forwards into more consistent goalscorers at Liverpool...

It's the way we play, it's the way we played, it's the way we bring the boys in the situations. Of course, it's about, 'Is it in yourself or not?' But it's the way we play, with how we position the players, how we protect the players, where we win the balls back and all these kind of things, how the boys can use their speed in these moments when we win the balls back and these kind of things. That's why they will be in a lot of goalscoring situations and that makes you then the player we remember when you look back. You're right, Sadio scored three against us, I think, when he played for Southampton but it was not that he scored every week – he didn't even start the game when he scored the three against us. So the consistency came with the confidence, with the teammates, with the structure of our game and all these kind of things. That's what we are working on, so that doesn't change.

The way we play should help strikers, the way we play should help defenders, last lines, because everybody's involved in that as well, so that's how it is. That's as well a little bit why very often midfielders are seen, 'Yeah, but they don't score often enough and they do that' because they keep all the things together. That's how it is. That's it, we will see. But the potential is there for sure.



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