Jurgen Klopp dismissed the idea of Liverpool being Premier League title contenders after they suffered a 2-0 defeat to struggling Newcastle United.
Liverpool have been revitalised since Klopp replaced Brendan Rodgers in the Anfield hotseat and they arrived at St James’ Park having won seven of their previous eight matches in all competitions.
The nature of some of those wins, most notably last month’s 4-1 demolition of Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium, has prompted growing talk of Klopp potentially helming title outsiders as the more fancied contenders continue to stumble behind surprise leaders Leicester City.
But after watching a below-par showing on Tyneside, where Martin Skrtel diverted Georginio Wijnaldum’s 69th-minute strike into his own net before the Netherlands international sealed the points in stoppage time, Klopp felt it was time to offer some perspective.
“I’m sorry if someone is disappointed,” he told BBC Sport.
“Maybe someone is laughing at this. We’re not part of this [title challengers] discussion.
“I hope some people did something better on this Sunday than watching this game.
“We have to react and learn. I’m sure the lads will do it.”
Liverpool lie seventh after 15 games of the Premier League season and will drop to eighth after their rivals Everton host Crystal Palace on Monday.