Liverpool midfielder Joe Allen feels some “frank words” from manager Jurgen Klopp helped his team after their loss at West Ham.
Klopp’s men suffered a 2-0 loss at Upton Park on Saturday but responded with a 1-0 victory at Stoke City in the League Cup semi-final first leg.
Allen, who set up Jordon Ibe’s goal at the Britannia Stadium, said criticism from Klopp was what Liverpool needed after their poor Premier League performance.
“It was just some frank words really and I think as a team we needed to hear them,” he said.
“But this team, this squad, has got great personality, great character, players who want to work hard, so there is no issue with that.
“We knew we needed to respond with a good performance first and foremost, a performance full of commitment and desire and we got that.”
Allen has made just one Premier League start for injury-hit Liverpool this season, with his other five appearances coming off the bench.
The 25-year-old Wales international’s contract expires in mid-2017, but Allen said talks over a new deal had lessened.
“That is something which has gone very quiet so I am not too sure really,” he said.
“I have made only one league start this season and I want to play more, I think that is obvious for any player in that situation.
“From my point of view it is about knuckling down, doing my job and giving my best, which I always do.”