Jurgen Klopp focusing on ‘massive task’ ahead as Liverpool target top-four push

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp is targeting a decisive week early next month which he believes will define not only this season but the next. His side’s exit from the Champions League after a 1-0 defeat in the Bernabeu saw them lose 6-2 on aggregate to Real Madrid, leaving them with just the option of securing a place in the Premier League’s top four to seal qualification for the European competition. They had started to gather momentum after taking 13 points from 15 but a 1-0 loss at Bournemouth was a knock to confidence as well as being a blow to their hopes of finishing ahead of Tottenham and Newcastle, their two main rivals for fourth place. With no match now scheduled until after the international break, Liverpool return with the toughest of tests to their top-four credentials as they head to Manchester City and Chelsea before hosting Premier League leaders Arsenal in the space of a week.