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Jürgen Klopp was very clear about where the blame lies for Liverpool failing to make the Champions League



Jürgen Klopp knows reason for Liverpool season as $143m double transfer can ensure no repeat

Jürgen Klopp was very clear about where the blame lies for Liverpool failing to make the Champions League places this season — the first full campaign that he has been in charge where that has been the case.

“We were too long not good enough ourselves,” Klopp said in his post-match press conference on Saturday. “We made the top four race pretty exciting and I didn’t think that was possible some weeks ago.

“The boys did really well in that period and our people enjoyed it as well. You can see today they are not angry with us; they are looking forward to a new Premier League season.”

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It certainly wasn’t the last eight games that have been the issue, with the 1-1 draw with Aston Villa being the only occasion where Liverpool dropped points in that time, which showed that the Reds still have a lot of quality.

The issue this year has been consistency, with dire away results and heavy beatings at the hands of Brighton and Wolves proving costly, to name just two — and the resurgence having come slightly too late.

Newcastle United is now on the scene, with its Saudi money meaning it will not be going anywhere. Perhaps had there not been another team with that kind of spending power, Liverpool could have got away with its off-season, as it did two years ago.

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Instead, Liverpool will have to make do with a Europa League place and make the most of its time in that competition, where it will surely be instilled as the immediate favorite.

Next season, though, Liverpool cannot afford to wait. A slow start, as it has found, not only removes you from the title race these days, but ultimately the top four race as well.

That is exactly why Liverpool needs to bring in players for the here and now this summer. There can be no adaptation period for the majority of the new additions; they simply need to hit the ground running.

Moves for Alexis Mac Allister and Mason Mount, for starters, add up for that very reason.

Fabrizio Romano tweeted that personal terms have almost been agreed with Liverpool for the former, who supposedly has a fixed price for a departure that can be activated in June, while Chelsea could be forced into letting Mount go with only a year left on his deal.

That duo is set to cost around $143m (£115m/€132m) combined, with Romano telling the House of Champions Podcast that Mac Allister will cost less than $81m (£65m/€75m), and The Guardian placing Mount’s valuation at $62m/£50m/€58m. If someone else (like Ryan Gravenberch, for instance) was added on top of that, the balance would be right in favor of experience over a project signing.

Liverpool’s existing key men — Mohamed Salah, Virgil van Dijk, Trent Alexander-Arnold and others — are all also vastly experienced in the Premier League, and will have a prolonged pre-season to get ready for what comes next.

This season, there was a shorter summer, and new players like Darwin Núñez to integrate. Then lengthy absences for Luis Díaz and Diogo Jota added to the pressure of getting it right straight away.

Next year, the conditions should be much better for that to transpire, as Liverpool knows a repeat would lead to a similarly disappointing season.

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