Liverpool cannot be distracted by Roma tie, says Jurgen Klopp
By Rory O'Callaghan
Last Updated: 13/04/18 2:22pm
Jurgen Klopp insists Liverpool cannot afford to focus solely on their upcoming Champions League semi-final against Roma while the race for the top four is still ongoing in the Premier League.
The Reds avoided European heavyweights Real Madrid and Bayern Munich in the draw for the final four in Nyon on Friday and will now face Roma, who produced a stunning comeback to beat Barcelona in the quarter-finals.
Up first, however, is a Premier League game against Bournemouth on Saturday and Klopp has urged his side to focus on the task at hand.
When asked if Liverpool's season was now all about the semi-final tie, Klopp said: "It sounds like you think we are already in the top four?
"I've said it before, it seems like our whole life is qualifying for the Champions League.
"The two games against Roma will be about qualifying for the next round, which would be the final, and all the other games are about qualifying for the Champions League next year.
"Because our opponents in the fight for the top four are too strong, you cannot think they will not win every game. It is possible.
"We need to be focused on Bournemouth, West Brom, Stoke, Chelsea and then Brighton. But in the specific moment we face Roma we will be ready for that game."
Mohamed Salah will return to face his former club when Liverpool visit the Stadio Olimpico in the second-leg of the semi-final, and Klopp is relishing the chance to visit Rome for the first time.
"Rome is the only place of the three options where I have not played before. That is already exciting," he said.
"I think they will be two difficult games, they are a fantastic side. You saw the two games against Barcelona.
"They've played a good season after a difficult transfer window last year. They lost not only Mo but also Emerson [Palmieri] - two key players for them.
"They are fighting for the Champions League again. I watched the second leg against Barcelona, they were outstanding."
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