Roberto Firmino wasn’t mentioned by name but Jurgen Klopp could sense where the question was leading.

“Good performances never give me a headache,” he insisted firmly.

Klopp’s subsequent explanation for starting hat-trick hero Diogo Jota at the Gewiss Stadium soon turned into an impassioned defence of Firmino, who found himself relegated to a cameo role as a rampant Liverpool registered the biggest win by an English club away to Italian opposition in European competition.

“It made sense to use the good shape Diogo is in and because (of) the way Atalanta play, we felt his skill set would help,” he said.

“But the world is sometimes a bad place, that in the moment when somebody is shining, we immediately speak about another player who played what feels like 500 games in a row.

“Without Bobby Firmino, we would not even be in the Champions League. For a lot of people in the world, if you ask them…





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