Jurgen Klopp has handed out hugs like Santa Claus delivers Christmas presents.
It seems that, after every single game, the Liverpool boss approaches each of his players and offers a warm embrace. Well, when they win, that is.
But one is wondering what Dejan Lovren has done to be snubbed by Klopp after Liverpool’s 4-1 win against Stoke on Saturday.
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After hugging Sheyi Ojo at full-time, Lovren thought he was the next man up. The Croation even offers out a hand, giving Klopp something to cling on to before leaning in.
But the 45-year-old looked right past Lovren and instead hugged Erik Pieters, who doesn’t even play for Liverpool.
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And things were just starting to look up for the former Southampton man, too.
After a truly woeful start to the season, the 26-year-old has found some form in recent weeks alongside Mamadou Sakho and, though Liverpool’s defence has continued to ship goals at a disturbing rate, Klopp at least knows Lovren isn’t going down without a fight.
The addition of Joel Matip from Schalke in the summer is expected to spell bad news for the Croat, who joined after just one impressive season at St Mary’s.
But if he can justify the £20 million fee Liverpool paid in 2014 on a consistent basis, it could be Matip who will be warming the bench.
Lovren shined against Dortmund
Lovren was in fine form in Thursday’s 1-1 Europa League draw at Borussia Dortmund, helping to deny Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Marco Reus from running riot, like the trio did in two legs against Tottenham.
He was under the added pressure of being one yellow card away from being suspended for the upcoming return leg at Anfield but coped superbly well.
“It was difficult for me because I want to play every game but when you think about bookings you will get a booking," he said after the game, per Sky Sports.
“So I didn't think about it, I just concentrated on my game and my defensive things and it was okay.”
Lovren is learning from his mistakes
Lovren is fully aware that his one-and-a-half year stint on Merseyside hasn’t gone to plan but is working hard to remove the errors from his game.
“I will do everything for my team but I think I have learned from my mistakes, I think I am a little bit cleverer now,” he added. “I am more experienced today."
His partnership alongside Sakho has looked stronger in recent weeks and it will need to be as Liverpool hunt European glory.
Lovren said on the relationship he shares with the Frenchman: “After a couple of games together it is much easier to understand each other and we hope to continue like that."
The pair were terrific against Dortmund but the Germans are in the dangerous position of needing to score. But if Aubameyang and co. run into the same Lovren and Sakho they faced last week, BVB stand little chance.
Who will progress - Liverpool or Borussia Dortmund? Have your say in the comments section below!
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