Phil Thompson, the Liverpool legend, thinks that Jürgen Klopp, the current coach of the Reds, underestimated the Merseyside derby match as he made a lot of changes and gave a rest to some key players.
Philippe Coutinho and Roberto Firmino started the match just on the bench while Dominic Solanke and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain were given a chance in the starting line-up. Liverpool were the better side and they dominated the ball possession but in the end, it just wasn’t enough. Everton managed to equalize from a doubtful penalty call but the points were divided in the end.
The former Liverpool player spoke about the rotation of the squad as he said, according to Sky Sports: “We, as Liverpool fans, have moaned about the rotation for a few weeks and it has come off previously, but this is a derby game. You play your best team in the derby. That selection worried me that he didn’t understand how big a game it was. He’s gone with a team to beat a mid-table team rather than win a derby game. If it was Manchester United he would have played a full-strength side, so it was maybe a bit of complacency as well as the rotation.”
Phil Thompson added that it was a huge risk to rotate before this game: “It’s always a risk rotating and for this game, I just can’t get my head around it as a Liverpool fan. I know it was important to him but we’ve all been fans for our lives. We knew they would park three buses and we needed that bit of craft which Coutinho brings. I’d have also kept Mohamed Salah on.”
In the end, he insisted that he can understand why was Klopp angry after the final whistle: “I can understand and he did apologise but I don’t think he’s had a good look at it because he wouldn’t have treated the reporters that way. Yes, it was very harsh and the referee couldn’t wait to point to the spot but it is one of them we see given.”