Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp lamented his side’s sluggish start after they had to come from behind to secure a late point in a 1-1 draw at Fulham.
Bobby Decordova-Reid struck the ball expertly past the recently returned Alisson to give the Cottagers a well-deserved lead in the 25th minute, but the Reds eventually found the equaliser when Mohamed Salah converted from the spot 10 minutes from time.
Fulham welcomed back 2,000 supporters to Craven Cottage for the first time since February, something which Klopp believes had an impact in bringing Liverpool’s 18-match winning streak against newly-promoted sides to an end.
We weren’t up to our standards first 30 minutes and that cost us in the end. Good response from the lads and need to take that into Wednesday. pic.twitter.com/DrsK6g3iJh
— Jordan Henderson (@JHenderson) December 13, 2020
“I’m not frustrated any more about that but, you’re right, it took us half an hour to get going and that of course makes the game more difficult,” the German manager said.
“It’s the first time supporters are here for a long, long time and they obviously create an atmosphere, and it helped Fulham a lot to create that atmosphere.
“They played different to the way they usually play, long balls, high balls, these kind of things, free-kicks. There were a lot of set pieces in the first half. But that’s how it is.
“With a lot of loud shouting from outside from all the coaches, you could see that in the first 15 minutes then with the half-time it helped massively and was much better.
“I think in the first half an hour we could have lost the game, but in the next 60 we should have won it. In the end we get a point and that’s it.”
Fulham had five shots on target and Alisson, who has recovered from a hamstring injury, was forced into a number of key saves to prevent the Cottagers extending their lead, with Klopp acknowledging his importance in the game.
“He was very important, obviously. You could see in one or two situations that he needs rhythm as well, but in the key moments he was there for sensational saves,” said the Reds boss.
Scott Parker expressed his pride in Fulham’s determined performance, having gone into the game with just seven points from 11 league fixures this season.
“I’m very proud,” said the Cottagers manager. “I think effort, commitment, the desire, we showed that in abundance today and that’s the constant message and an ingredient which I think it’s fair to say my team always show.
“But I think what pleased me the most was the quality we showed.
“I thought first half we showed some real quality and it was clear to see the way we played and moved the ball caused Liverpool, who are a fantastic team, a lot of problems. Probably on the scale of things we could have gone in a couple of goals up in the first half.
“And in the second half in terms of commitment, desire and passion we showed. I think the game panned out second half how we all knew it was going to, so we’re all very, very proud of the team.
“Probably a little bit disappointed the team are, and myself really, and that probably shows how far we’ve come in such a short space of time that we’re disappointed coming off the pitch with just a draw.”