Tottenham Hotspur 0-0 Liverpool: Jurgen Klopp debut ends in draw
By Lyall Thomas at White Hart Lane
Last Updated: 17/10/15 6:26pm
A revitalised Liverpool earned a hard-fought 0-0 draw at Tottenham Hotspur in Jurgen Klopp's first match in charge.
The Reds started fiercely with a high-pressing game and almost took the lead early on when Divock Origi, starting in place of the injured Daniel Sturridge, hit the bar with a close-range header.
Spurs recovered and finished the first half strongly, with Simon Mignolet producing a superb one-handed stop to deny Clinton N'Jie and also keeping out an effort from Harry Kane.
And, in a second half bereft of clear chances, late shots from Kane and Emre Can were the closest either side came to a winner at White Hart Lane.
The draw stretches Spurs' unbeaten league run to eight matches and also means Gerard Houllier remains the only Liverpool manager to win his first Premier League game in charge.
After a week of shocking injuries, with two first-team players Danny Ings and Joe Gomez ruled out for the season, Klopp had to deal with another blow just hours before kick-off.
Sturridge was ruled out with a knee problem despite travelling with the squad and he was replaced by Origi, while Adam Lallana came in for Ings.
Having made his first business this week to watch Liverpool's U21s, Klopp also featured three youngsters on the bench who have not appeared at all yet this term; Jerome Sinclair, Joao Teixeira and Connor Randall.
Pochettino, meanwhile, changed two from the draw at Swansea, with Moussa Dembele replacing the suspended Eric Dier and Danny Rose coming in at left-back for Ben Davies.
It was Origi who almost rewarded the visitors' ferocious opening 10 minutes when he headed Can's flick on against the crossbar.
Spurs' biggest issue was whether Dembele could fill the shoes of Dier in midfield - and the Belgian was impressive as he won a string of key tackles before half-time.
The hosts had two fine chances to take the lead too, first when N'Jie, who replaced Nacer Chadli after the Belgian picked up an injury on 10 minutes, was put through by Kane and forced Mignolet to tip wide with the outside of his boot.
Kane was then one-on-one with the Reds keeper but shot straight at his legs before Dele Alli's rebound was cleared off the line by Mamadou Sakho.
Clear chances were at a premium in the second half, with a timid shot from Lucas allowing Hugo Lloris to easily gather and Kyle Walker failing to test Mignolent with two equally tame shots from distance.
But Kane should again have beaten Mignolet in the 83rd minute when he was clear in space and had the whole goal to aim for from the edge of the box, but shot close to the 'keeper's body.
Can then went close for Liverpool in the final minute of normal time when his low shot from distance whistled past the far post.
Chadli, who was carried off on a stretcher after his early injury, will be assessed by the Tottenham medical team in the coming days but the Spurs manager fears ankle ligament damage.
"We need to assess tomorrow and after tomorrow we will know more," Pochettino said.
"Maybe it's a problem in his ankle ligaments but we hope it is not a big, big issue.
"After the game it was painful and in the next 24 or 48 hours we will be able to see better how the injury is."
Liverpool's performance surpassed Klopp's expectations coming into the match, and the manager was pleased with his side's fast start to the game.
"I am satisfied with the start because I didn't have the biggest expectation," Klopp said after the 0-0 draw at White Hart Lane.
"Tottenham are a very strong and well-tuned team. It was difficult but I am really satisfied. Our start was brilliant and we surprised their team a little bit.
"The problem we had in the game was that, when we had the ball, we weren't cool enough, nor used our skills. We were too hectic. We didn't see the right option, when you should open your view.
"We had our moments, but after three or four days with the team it was brilliant."
Tottenham: Lloris 7, Walker 6, Alderweireld 7, Vertonghen 7, Rose 6; Dembele 8, Alli 6, Lamela 6, Erisken 7, Chadli 6, Kane 6
Subs: N'Jie, 7 Townsend 6
Liverpool: Mignolet 7, Clyne 7, Sakho 8, Skrtel 7, Moreno 6, Can 7, Lucas 7, Milner 7; Coutinho 7, Lallana, 6 Origi 6
Subs: Allen 6, Ibe 6
Man of the match: Mamadou Sakho