London - Jurgen Klopp's tenure as Liverpool manager
began with a hard-fought 0-0 draw at Tottenham Hotspur in the Premier League on
Greeted by Germany flags in the away end
bearing legends like 'Liverpool Uber Alles', Klopp handed a league debut to
20-year-old striker Divock Origi, who hit the bar in the early stages at White
But he was also indebted to goalkeeper
Simon Mignolet for producing three important saves, which meant that although
Liverpool have now won only once inside 90 minutes in their last 10 games,
their manager was spared defeat on his first outing.
Klopp will have drawn encouragement from
his team's combativeness, particularly against a team who had crushed
Manchester City 4-1 in their previous home game, and will now turn his thoughts
to his first home game against Rubin Kazan in the Europa League on Thursday.
Mauricio Pochettino's Spurs, meanwhile, are
now unbeaten in seven games - the longest run in the division - having ended
a run of five straight league defeats against Liverpool.
Klopp made just two changes to the last
team selected by his sacked predecessor Brendan Rodgers as Adam Lallana and
Origi replaced knee ligament injury victim Danny Ings and Daniel Sturridge, who
was absent with a knock.
Clad in a black tracksuit, Klopp was
quickly out on the touchline to offer encouragement to his new charges, who
lined up in a 4-3-2-1 formation with Lallana and Philippe Coutinho supporting
lone striker Origi.
Aggressive pressing was the cornerstone of
Klopp's approach at Borussia Dortmund and Liverpool made an energetic start
that saw Origi head against the crossbar from one of a succession of early
Spurs' rearguard effort cost them the
services of Nacer Chadli, who was injured defending a corner and ceded his
place to Clinton Njie.
Christian Eriksen and Erik Lamela also
found themselves on the end of shuddering challenges, from Mignolet and
Liverpool left-back Alberto Moreno, but the early exertions seemed to fatigue
the visitors and Spurs assumed the upper hand.
A loose pass from Lallana allowed Harry
Kane to tee up Njie, whose outside-of-the-foot shot was brilliantly tipped
around the post by Mignolet.
The Belgium international also parried from
Kane, with Dele Alli's follow-up blocked by Lucas Leiva, while Eriksen had an
attempt deflected wide and Njie and Mousa Dembele, in for the suspended Eric
Dier, shot over.
After a feisty, open first half, the tempo
fell in the second, with attacking caution on both sides restricting attempts
on goal to long-range potshots.
It remained a physical game, however, and
the Spurs dug-out flew from their seats in protest after Danny Rose was
flattened in a collision with James Milner.
Klopp waited until the last 10 minutes
before making any changes, with Joe Allen and Jordon Ibe replacing Lallana and
In the latter stages, Mignolet had to
plunge to his left to repel a strafing effort from Kane, while Emre Can shot
narrowly wide for Liverpool as a finely balanced game reached an appropriate