Klopp pleased with Ox's desire to improve
Oxlade-Chamberlain criticises himself despite scoring in 5-0 win over Swansea
Liverpool boss Juergen Klopp is pleased that midfielder Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has been critical of himself after Tuesday's thrashing of Swansea as he believes it illustrates the midfielder's desire for improvement.
Oxlade-Chamberlain scored the final goal in a 5-0 rout of Swansea at Anfield but the England international said after the game that he had been disappointed with his performance, reported Reuters.
The 24-year-old joined Liverpool from Arsenal on deadline day in August, hoping to play a more central role on Merseyside after being used mostly on the flanks by Arsene Wenger.
"Ox is a smart player. He knew it was not even close to his best possible performance, but it's no problem, that's football," Klopp told the club's website.
"Ox needs to adapt to the position still, that's no problem. He has a lot of space for improvement. But it's nice to see that he is really hardworking on it.
"He is a really hardworking boy and wants to improve. It's good that he knows he can do better - now we have to work together on it so he can do better."
Klopp also hailed defender Ragnar Klavan as a role model for his teammates after the Estonian re-established himself in Liverpool's starting line-up and helped the club keep three clean sheets in his last five league starts.
Klavan is likely to be fourth-choice centre back when Virgil van Dijk is officially registered as a Liverpool player on Jan 2, but Klopp said it was important to have depth in such key positions.
"He is a perfect role model for pretty much all signings. He loves being here," Klopp added.
"He needs to be confident. He could be much more confident with his skills... But we are working on that as well.
"He is in good shape at the moment. It's very, very important for us that he is. We had Joel (Matip) and Dejan (Lovren) with one or two little (injuries) so it was very important that he could step in."
Liverpool, who are fourth in the league, host eighth-placed Leicester City tomorrow, just two days before their New Year's Day meeting with Burnley.
The Reds had a similar situation last season, when they hosted Manchester City before travelling to Sunderland less than 48 hours later.
They beat the Citizens 1-0 and drew 2-2 with the Black Cats.
When asked if any lessons could be drawn from last year's quickfire double-header, Klopp told the club's website: "You cannot learn from it, you only learn to accept it.
"We have to be fully concentrated on the Leicester game and, after the game, we have a few hours to 'collect the bones' to see who is able to play against Burnley and then we'll make the line-up.
"We don't moan about it. We play Leicester, we play Burnley and we play Everton (in the FA Cup third round on Jan 6) - no problem with that."
This time a year ago, the Reds had Philippe Coutinho, Joel Matip and Jordan Henderson in the treatment room.
This time around, although Henderson, Nathaniel Clyne, Alberto Moreno and Daniel Sturridge are out, the Reds are coping better.
Said Klopp: "It's not that last year we were not prepared for this period.
"We had injuries in the wrong moment. That's how it is. We have injuries now - hopefully there will not be a few more players injured."