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Klopp confident against Arsenal despite Arteta’s impact

Premier League Chelsea V Liverpool
Liverpool manager Juergen Klopp celebrates with Sadio Mane and Virgil van Dijk

Liverpool’s recent record against Arsenal may not be up to the high standards they set themselves but Jurgen Klopp sees no reason to fear the Gunners.

Mikel Arteta’s side inflicted a rare defeat on the Reds in July, after Klopp’s side had won their first league title in 30 years, and then won again on penalties in the Community Shield last month after a 1-1 draw at Wembley.

Klopp, who can see the improvement the Spaniard has made since taking over in December, admits the league defeat was down to an even rarer drop in intensity levels.

But there will be no shortage of that at Anfield on Monday.

“We have played them twice now and in the Super Cup game (Community Shield) it was an open game and we were unlucky,” Klopp said.

“I think the league game we helped them slightly as we gave them two goals and we presented the goals on a plate, we made presents.

“I think it was one of the few games where we, in moments, dropped concentration, it was late last season and Arsenal were waiting for these things.

“In that game we were really good apart from two or three moments. That night we could have won but we didn’t and we accept that.

“I can say a lot of positive things about Arsenal but I think we still have a chance on Monday night.”

Arteta has had an immediate impact in his first nine months in charge, lifting the FA Cup and recording 11 victories in 17 matches since the post-lockdown resumption.

And while the focus is on their attacking resources Klopp has been equally impressed by their organisation.

“Mikel Arteta showed in a pretty short period of time he seems to be an exceptional football manager because the team he sets up now, the structure of the team, is absolutely exceptional,” he added.

“You can see the balance between defence and offence is really good. He did an impressive job and changed the whole mood in the club.

“I don’t know exactly what the mood was before he arrived but I don’t think a lot of people thought before the end of the season he would win a competition, and he did that by winning the FA Cup.

“It is a tough opponent, 100 per cent. It is their defensive structure, they defend properly. All the players are involved in their defending.

“They probably defend in a 5-4-1 and when you have quality players in the team, for the other team it is a pretty tricky situation, then with the speed they have for the counter-attack it can cause trouble.”

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