Jurgen Klopp has described Liverpool as 'mentality monsters' – a team that will fight until the bitter end regardless of the challenge put in front of them.
The signs of the mindset Klopp was instilling on Merseyside were there early on, when his side battled back from 3-1 down at home to his former club Dortmund in the Europa League quarter final, becoming one of many memorable nights under the German in pursuit of European glory.
More recently a comeback over the giants of Barcelona – which rivals any other Anfield has witnessed – and a last gasp turnaround in the league away at Aston Villa epitomises the never-say-die attitude Klopp demands of the players who are willing to run through walls for him.
The gritty determination to win has seen Liverpool reach a level of consistency reds fans hadn't witnessed before during the Premier League era, racking up 97 and 99 points in back-to-back seasons to finally end the 30-year wait to be crowned domestic champions.
It's a consistency the manager and his team knew would be required to catch Pep Guardiola's Manchester City juggernaut – and one that Klopp hinted was coming just months after joining the reds.
The 'normal one' took over from Brendan Rodgers in October 2015 and guided Liverpool to the Europa League final, which included the incredible turnaround against Dortmund along the way.
Liverpool's half-time lead against Sevilla collapsed and Klopp saw his new side slump to the turf at St Jakob-Park in Basel following their second cup final loss of his short spell in charge.
But amid the disappointment and finger pointing afterwards, Klopp remained resolute and recognised the mentality that took them to the final had the power to be a turning point in the club's history.
Speaking afterwards he said: "We had a few moments where we maybe over-performed – we were unbelievable, great and the boys showed what they are capable of, but then to have this consistency you need a little bit more time.
"They are still young and this was their first big final – unfortunately their second final [loss] of the season, but it was a big final and we will use this experience together.
"Then someday everybody will say Basel was a very decisive moment for the wonderful future of Liverpool FC."
Finding the consistency also meant finding the right personnel and over the next two seasons Klopp began to assemble a squad with the talent and attitude to compete at the top table once again.
Two fourth place finishes followed as the likes of Mo Salah and Sadio Mane joined the fight.
As Liverpool began to make strides, arguably the club's leading light Philippe Coutinho was lured away by the promise of bigger things – a feeling which had become too familiar with fans after similar experiences with star names such as Fernando Torres and Luis Suárez.
But Klopp used the transfer fee to propel the project forward again, bringing in Virgil van Dijk and Alisson Becker shortly afterwards which meant he, and the fans, never looked back.
The consistency and monster mentality Klopp was searching for clicked into gear. Liverpool missed out in the Champions League final and returned to lift the trophy the following year. They then missed out on the league title by a single point and returned to lift the trophy the following year.
In two Premier League seasons, Liverpool have walked away with 195 points out of a possible 228. Klopp was given the "little bit more time" he asked for to find consistency, delivering the results and silverware along with it.
Source: Read Full Article