Klopp makes coronavirus admission as he explains Liverpool’s UCL defeat

Jurgen Klopp says the outbreak of coronavirus made it very difficult for Liverpool to prepare for their Champions League clash with Atletico Madrid.

Reigning European champions Liverpool were dumped out of this season's competition by Atletico Madrid in the round of 16 stage.

Atletico won the first leg of the tie 1-0 in Madrid, meaning Liverpool had to respond at Anfield in order to progress. But the Reds were again beaten 3-2 after extra time and knocked out of the tournament.

There was much disruption in the build-up to the game, with many believing the tie should have been played behind closed doors to prevent the further spread of the virus.

And Klopp says that all the distraction made it difficult for him and his players to prepare for the must-win fixture.

"It is two weeks ago, but it feels like it is ages ago that we played Atletico and Thursday was a day off. I remember, we all knew about the situation with coronavirus around the world but we were still 'in our tunnel', if you want, and until then it didn't really arrive into our mind in England," Klopp told Liverpool's official website.

"We played the Bournemouth game on Saturday, we won it, then Sunday City lost, so the information for us was 'two wins to go'.

"But then on Monday morning, I woke up and heard about the situation in Madrid, that they would close the schools and universities from Wednesday, so it was really strange to prepare for that game, to be honest.

"I usually don't struggle with things around me, I can build barriers right and left when I prepare for a game, but in that moment it was really difficult.

"Wednesday we had the game, I loved the game, I loved what I saw from the boys, it was a really, really good performance other than the result – we didn't score enough, we conceded too many, that's all clear, but between these two main pieces of information it was a brilliant game!

"Thursday [we were] off and then Friday when we arrived it was already clear this is not a session. Yes, we trained, but it was more of a meeting. We had a lot of things to talk about, a lot of things to think about, things I never thought before in my life about.


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