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By Phil McNulty
Chief football writer
The parties at the final whistle at Stamford Bridge of manager Jurgen Klopp provided a window to the importance of victory from his Premier League match in charge.
Klopp’s effect on Liverpool in that span has been astounding, culminating in making them European champions for the sixth time with victory over Tottenham in Madrid in June.
And Klopp’s record in domestic affairs is formidable, in the time period with his tally of all 92 victories.
It didn’t quite bring the title last year, when Manchester City pipped them despite Liverpool dropping only one league match – but revived belief is surging through those fans who celebrated with Klopp in the decision of the 2-1 triumph over Chelsea that gave the Reds highest points from six matches.
This really is a Liverpool side building the platform for what they and Klopp hope will be the return of their league title – their holy grail – after having a 30-year wait.
Liverpool dug deep to win on Sunday and turn into the first group to take points from their six matches in successive seasons.
They’ve won their past 15 league matches City putting with a streak in top-flight history, even when they gained 18 between December and August 2017.
Name wins are pretty as a picture since a number of those Liverpool have inflicted on competitions in his 149 games but these three points will be pleasing to the attention of Klopp.
Since Klopp rightly stated:”You won’t ever win at Chelsea without putting a suitable change in and we did that today.
“It is exceptional. What could I say? We have to keep going. It never looks as easy as it did for Manchester City but we’ve not had these games however. We have been required to work for this .”
Klopp is generally revived but also the body language from his technical area in Stamford Bridge was especially telling, either during and after a game where Liverpool were put under greater stress than they’ve been for a time.
He had been nonstop from the first whistle, and particularly when Chelsea threatened to wipe out their lead.
Klopp fist-pumped his chest at the players’ management, exhorting greater effort. The German’s cries carried rows back. He chased up and down on the place when possession was squandered. He engaged fourth official Kevin Buddy and Chelsea counterpart Frank Lampard in lengthy debate on more than one occasion.
And when the last whistle went the ecstasy of Klopp was clear before tapping his soul in front of Liverpool support as he went across each member of his staff and players.
In the space of those 150 Premier League matches Klopp has had a transformative effect on Liverpool, satisfying his initial mission to”turn doubters into believers” and then a number.
Not a lot of the team from Klopp’s launching game off to Spurs on 17 October 2015 remain. While Divock Origi is out injured at Chelsea, Adam Lallana and James Milner were to the bench.
No-one have to underestimate the absolute brilliance and resilience of Manchester City, not only in responding to defeat at Norwich by thrashing Watford but also the manner in which they overhauled and remained ahead of Liverpool last season.
What’s telling, however, is that Liverpool’s Champions League win decorations not sated it and appears to have sharpened their appetite. The Premier League is their assignment.
They have shown themselves capable of types of victories and this was among the less eye-catching variety, but precious and offering Klopp a glance.
Liverpool were nowhere near their best but it’s one of a Premier League season’s amazing old adages the secret to achievement is winning those events.
And, as a bonus, Liverpool are also capable of accomplishing different types of targets.
Brilliance in the likes of Roberto Firmino Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane along with the flowing moves certainly are a familiar sight.
But either from free-kick patterns, the header of Firmino and Trent Alexander-Arnold’s strong attack, supposed Liverpool have now scored 34 goals from set-pieces than any other team, seven more since the start of last season.
If Liverpool are not performing at their best, Klopp demands courage, intensity, dedication – the kinds of quality and excellence he has drilled into his side over 150 games.
Those qualities were needed here. The demands of Klopp were delivered on by liverpool – and also the Anfield juggernaut rolls .
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