Jurgen Klopp Says Liverpool Need 'Big Balls' to Win at PSG in Champions League

Matt JonesFeatured ColumnistNovember 28, 2018

Liverpool's German head coach Jurgen Klopp reacts as he gives a press conference at the Parc des Princes stadium in Paris on November 27, 2018 on the eve of their Champions' League football match against Paris Saint-Germain (PSG). (Photo by FRANCK FIFE / AFP)        (Photo credit should read FRANCK FIFE/AFP/Getty Images)
FRANCK FIFE/Getty Images

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp believes his team will need to show "big balls" if they are to beat Paris Saint-Germain at the Parc des Princes on Wednesday in the UEFA Champions League. 

The match is a massive one in Group C, as Napoli top the group ahead of the Reds—the Italian side have a superior head-to-head record—with PSG a point behind both and Red Star Belgrade two points off the pace.

While Liverpool beat PSG 3-2 earlier in the competition, the showdown away from home is set to be a bigger challenge, and Klopp thinks they'll need to show more than their footballing ability to get over the line, per Dominic King of the Daily Mail.

"Paris are a real package, defensively and offensively. You have all their offensive players, then Adrien Rabiot, outstanding, Marco Verratti, the whole world wanted him two years ago. You cannot ignore that.

"If we are not at our peak, we have no chance. So you have to play football against them or you will never get rid of the pressure. With the ball, they make constant pressure so if you have the ball you have to control the game. You need really big balls to do that."

Liverpool showed in their run to the Champions League final last season they have what it takes to pick up results in these massive matches away from home and will be confident going to PSG on Wednesday.

While they have suffered defeats in both of their Champions League away fixtures so far in 2018-19, overall Klopp's team have been brilliant this season. Journalist Melissa Reddy summed up how effective they've been in the Premier League: 

Melissa Reddy @MelissaReddy_

#LFC have 33 points from 13 games - their highest ever tally in the Premier League era. They've also conceded their fewest number of goals after this many matches of a league season (5 goals).

To be so productive and within two points of leaders Manchester City is a nod to the coaching and recruitment carried out by Klopp. Even so, if they want to repeat or better last season's run in Europe a result in the French capital feels important, especially with Napoli to come in their final group game.

PSG may not have been at their best in Europe this season, albeit they were much improved in earning a draw at Napoli last time out, but they are a force to be reckoned with.

In Ligue 1 they are pulverising opposition on a consistent basis and setting new standards in French football's top division: 

OptaJean @OptaJean

14 - Paris have won their last 14 games in Ligue 1, their longest streak ever in their history in Ligue 1. Unstoppable. @PSG_English #PSGTFC https://t.co/CrBo4orGIv

In addition, despite some injury fears in the buildup to the game, key attackers Kylian Mbappe and Neymar are set to start: 

Sky Sports News @SkySportsNews

BREAKING: PSG head coach Thomas Tuchel confirms Neymar and Kylian Mbappe both fit to face Liverpool on Wednesday. #SSN https://t.co/5PsP41zWrL

Although PSG's attacking potency is enough to cause problems for any team in the world, there are areas where Liverpool will think they can get at the Ligue 1 champions. In defence and midfield in particular, they've looked unsure.

While Napoli at home in the final group game will be tough, it also gives the Reds a failsafe as they gear up for their encounter in Paris. Expect an attacking approach from the Premier League outfit and an enterprising fixture as a result.