Liverpool had to thwart wild Everton football, says Klopp

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[December 20, 2016]  LIVERPOOL (Reuters) - Liverpool had to combat "wild football" from Everton before a last-gasp winner from Sadio Mane earned the visitors a 1-0 derby win at Goodison Park on Monday, said manager Juergen Klopp.

Klopp's men completely controlled the second half but had to wait until four minutes into stoppage time to break through, Mane sliding in to convert the rebound from close range after substitute Daniel Sturridge's 20-metre shot had struck the post.

"The best thing you can do on a night like this is win and you saw how happy our fans were," Klopp told Sky Sports television after Liverpool rose to second in the Premier League, six points behind leaders Chelsea.

"I can't remember one chance for Everton. The plan of Everton was wild football. They were chasing us everywhere, it is really difficult to play against this.

"We couldn't handle it at first. We will be better at reacting against this in a few months," added Klopp.

"We were much better in the second half, we could have scored earlier. If you only win games when you are brilliant you won't win many games, it was a battle and we were ready for it."

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Referee Mike Dean added eight minutes of stoppage time after Everton goalkeeper Maarten Stekelenburg sustained a leg injury in the second half and was replaced by Joel Robles.

"We are really disappointed to concede in extra time," said Everton manager Ronald Koeman. "The eight minutes killed us.

"We have to wait to see about Stekelenburg's injury, we will know more tomorrow, and (midfielder) James McCarthy has a hamstring injury.

"In the second half we had problems to stop Liverpool," added Koeman.

Everton's defeat left them ninth in the table with 23 points from 17 matches.

(Writing by Tony Jimenez; Editing by Rex Gowar)


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