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'Rare' Jota gets a 'well done' from Reds boss; KLOPP HAILS MATCH-WINNER AND SENDS BEST TO RUI.

Byline: IAN DOYLE and PAUL GORST at Molineux

Jurgen Klopp praised the "pretty rare" impact of Diogo Jota as Liverpool celebrated a "dirty win" at Wolverhampton Wanderers.

Jota struck in the second minute of first-half injurytime against his former club to earn thereds a 1-0 Premier League win at Molineux on Monday night.

It was the Portuguese forward's 10th goal in 21 appearances since arriving from Wolves for an initial PS41million having recently returned from three months out with a knee problem.

And when asked about the difference Jota has made to his side, Klopp said: "Huge.

"He is just a class football player. But we cannot take it for granted that a boy who is out for three months comes back and has an immediate impact again.

"That's pretty rare, to be honest. But he has. It has been really helpful, and tonight it makes it even more special that he could score that goal.

"It was a nice goal and it was a good passing situation from us, and the perfect moment to score the goal, to be honest, a few seconds before the halftime whistle. That was really good."

Liverpool have now moved up to sixth place in the Premier League table and five points off the Champions League qualification berths.

And while not at their best, Klopp was happy at the manner in which his side dug into earn only a third clean sheet in their last 13 top-flight outings.

"The rest of the game was a lot of defending and I'm completely fine with that," added the Reds boss. "It was exactly what we wanted to do and what I wanted to see.

"I wanted to see we 100% understand the situation right. It's not about being Liverpool on a gala night, it's about being Liverpool and being ready to fight with everything you have for a result.

"That must be possible even on nights when we are not at our absolute best. I'm really happy." about the performance, it's all fine, but obviously the game was what Robbo (Andy Robertson) called it an ugly three points and I call it a dirty three points.

"I couldn't be more happy about the dirty three points."

Klopp sent Liverpool's best wishes to Wolves goalkeeper Rui Patricio after he suffered a suspected concussion.

But the Reds manager doesn't believe the accidental collision could have been avoided with a change of the offside laws after Mohamed Salah had a goal chalked off.

Patricio was stretchered off in the closing stages following an accidental knee to the head from his captain, Conor Coady, as Diogo Jota's first-half strike won the game for the visitors.

After a lengthy stoppage, Wolves were allowed to use a fourth substitute under the 'concussion law' with John Ruddy coming on in place of his stricken colleague.

Klopp said the nature of the incident made the game an afterthought at the time, but the Reds boss says the current offside rule - one that sees flags belatedly lifted by referees' assistants - was not to blame for the incident.

"We of course wish him all the best, it was a very awful situation," Klopp said.

"I didn't even see it to be honest. I saw the impact but not the situation because I watched it back and saw the flag going up.

"I was surprised I heard the goalie was on the ground and yes, everything loses its importance in that moment.

"So I don't know how long [play stopped for], maybe seven or eight minutes, that is completely normal and then you worry even more.

"So yes, we wish him all the best in his recovery and hopefully he will be fine, immediately."

The Liverpool boss added: "I think the whole [offside law] needs to be looked at, but I don't think this situation...from what I saw and I didn't see it back, it was not like miles offside or the clearest offside in the world.

"So I really think for that [injury], we cannot change this situation as unlucky and awful as it was, yes.

"But there are obviously situations in the game when everyone sees that it is offside.

"But they are the rules, we have spoken about a lot of things and they need to be looked at, for sure, if someone changes it? I don't know."


Manager Jurgen Klopp congratulates Trent Alexander-Arnold after Liverpool get back to winning ways in the Premier League at Wolves last night PAUL ELLIS/GETTY
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Title Annotation:Sport
Author:IAN DOYLE and PAUL GORST at Molineux
Publication:Liverpool Echo (Liverpool, England)
Date:Mar 16, 2021
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