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Klopp Defends Coutinho and Firmino Omission for Merseyside Derby

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has defended his decision to rest Brazilian duo Philippe Coutinho and Roberto Firmino for Sunday’s Merseyside derby at Anfield.

The pair sat out the Reds’ 1-1 draw with Everton, with the away side levelling Mohamed Salah’s opener with a Wayne Rooney penalty on 77 minutes.

Klopp was asked about his decision to rotate and met questions with a straight bat, “I thought before the game, yes. Still yes, even when the result doesn't show it. We did it in the last six or seven weeks.

“We do it like this. I've said it here, I've said it to the boys already, we can change as much as we want when we win the games, but when we don't win the games I take the blame. I have no problem with that.

“The boys who came in were fresh and did a brilliant job. They played, they worked hard. We worked hard, it was a derby, we accepted it, we took it as a derby, it's a fight. You need to be ready for each challenge -- and we were ready for each challenge.

"We tried everything. We could have scored, we had clear chances, half-chances -- we had everything you need but we didn't use it, that's how it is and we know that. It was always clear a day like this could happen -- we wanted to win 1-0 and we didn't."


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