Jurgen Klopp has responded to any critics of Liverpool grinding out results by pointing out that the Premier League leaders “are not the Harlem Globetrotters”.
Under the guidance of a German tactician, the Reds have been synonymous with attacking football.
A front three of Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino helped to earn plenty of admirers last season, with Liverpool prepared to try and outscore opponents.
They have since sought to address defensive frailties, with there a need to become tighter at the back, and a slight tweak in approach has delivered rich rewards.
Narrow wins, such as the 1-0 success secured at Brighton on Saturday, are not considered to fit the ‘heavy metal’ brand Klopp is associated with though.
The Reds boss is prepared to accept as much but was as pleased with a dogged victory on the south coast as any other he has secured, with it impossible to entertain all of the time.
He told reporters, with his team seven points clear again in the Premier League title race: “It’s absolutely OK. We are not the Harlem Globetrotters, we have to deliver results. It’s difficult enough. For that we need to perform. The performance was good.
“It was not the best performance of the season in a few parts. But from a maturity point of view, I would say it was the most mature performance of the season. It’s so important.
“On a good day, everybody can win a football games. On an average day, not a lot of football teams can win football games. On a bad day, pretty much only a few teams can win football games.
“Today was not a bad day, it was a difficult day for us. It was just a difficult game because Brighton is doing really well. We played a lot of times against a 4-5-1 system, but how they do it is different. I’m really happy that the boys took the game like it is.”
Liverpool had suffered back-to-back defeats in league and cup competition prior to heading to the Amex Stadium.
Klopp maintains that nobody at Anfield had got caught up in a slight wobble, but admits that he is pleased to see his side back on the title-chasing “horse”.
He added: “Not because of Man City, it’s just important [to respond].
“If you fall from the horse, the best thing you can do is go immediately back on it. Do you use that saying in English as well? That’s how it is. It’s cool, it’s good and important.
“We didn’t make a big fuss about the two defeats, to be honest. We never speak about the games before really. We knew that it’s really difficult to take all three points here.
“I’m really happy, even with the way we did it. You have to score early and keep the momentum going. The scoring momentum we didn’t have today.
“Creating was OK, but finishing was not at our best. All the rest – defending and all that stuff – was really good, so we deserved the three points.”