Cape Town - Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp believes the 1-0 win over
Merseyside rivals Everton in the FA Cup sent an 'important message' to the
The Reds boss made nine alterations, handing two starting
debuts to Nat Phillips - brought back from a loan spell at Stuttgart to play in
the game - and new signing Takumi Minamino, and a third to 19-year-old Yasser
Another academy graduate, 18-year-old Toxteth-born Curtis
Jones, scored a brilliant 71st-minute winner, but the whole team - with a value
of just £43.9 million at kick-off - showed why Klopp put faith in them to give
his first team stars a day off.
When James Milner was forced off after nine minutes, to be replaced
by Larouci, and handed the armband to Adam Lallana, it meant the latter had
more appearances for the club than the rest of the side put together.
That did not show, though, as the Reds weathered an early
Everton storm before clinically taking victory.
"We never take it for granted. I would love to see a
few people and ask them what they thought about the line-up, and all these bad
things about me and the FA Cup and no respect," Klopp said.
"It's a very important message. If you want to be a
Liverpool player, you have to respect the principles of this club.
"We cannot always play the best football in the world,
but we can fight like nobody else, and as long as we use our principles then we
will be a difficult opponent to play against."
This tie was the fifth competition Liverpool had played in
the previous 27 days, so it was little surprise Klopp decided to give his jaded
Premier League leaders a rest.
Had the injury situation at the club not been as bad as it
is - the return of Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain left six senior players unavailable
- Klopp would have fielded a stronger side, but what was essentially a
third-string line-up did him proud.
"It's very important we give the boys this opportunity.
I tell them in training that it's important not all of them, in their first
impulse, go out on loan. There is something to learn here as well," he
"We saw these boys come closer and closer to being
ready to play for us. I'm really happy about that.
"It made me really proud and I told the boys they have
to be proud in that performance because it was exceptional."
- TeamTalk Media