Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp said his Liverpool side would still chase an unprecedented Quadruple despite seeing their Premier League title hopes suffer a huge blow on Saturday.
Klopp’s side have already won the League Cup and are in the FA Cup and Champions League finals and victory over Tottenham on Saturday would have cranked up the pressure on Manchester City in the title race.
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But they could only draw 1-1 with Tottenham Hotspur — ending a run of 12 successive home league wins and City can pull three points clear with three games remaining if they beat Newcastle United on Sunday.
Son Heung-min gave Tottenham the lead and though Luis Diaz equalised, Liverpool’s knack of finding a winner deserted them as their attack lacked its usual potency.
“I’m not happy, but not as sad as the players are right now and it is my job to explain why something happens like this,” Klopp, whose side beat Villarreal to reach the Champions League final on Tuesday, said after a tense Anfield duel.
“They are down in the dressing room, it was intense. When you play top teams, you need luck in the decisive moments.
“I’m not happy, but not as sad as the players are right now and it is my job to explain why something happens like this.
“That is why it is so hard. That is why the Quadruple is so unlikely; there is a reason nobody has done it in this country. We will keep going.”
Klopp praised his players and refused to use tiredness as a reason for dropping vital points but conceded that he was not expecting Manchester City to slip up on Sunday.
“I can’t see it,” he said. “I wish I could think differently but I can’t see it.
“Our mentality was incredible and the counter-pressing was a different level. But we faced an opponent set-up for counter-attacks with a full week to prepare, we accept that and it is a draw. We will keep going. We weren’t tired.”
Tottenham could have snatched victory at the death when Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg spurned a glorious chance.
Tottenham remained in fifth place, a point below Arsenal, who play Leeds United on Sunday. Tottenham host Arsenal on Thursday in what for them will be a must-win game in the top-four battle.
“Now we try to rest and recover because on Thursday we have another important game against Arsenal,” manager Antonio Conte said. “With only three games to go it will be very important to get points for a place in the Champions League.”