Liverpool's Klopp supports Pochettino's top four comments

LIVERPOOL -- Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has said he supports Mauricio Pochettino's belief that regular top-four finishes in the Premier League are more important than success in domestic cup competitions.

Pochettino defended his trophy-less record at Tottenham Hotspur in the week they exited the League Cup and FA Cup, believing the club was "so successful" in competing with rivals.

Klopp feels the financial rewards from two consecutive seasons of Champions League qualification have massively helped Liverpool's title charge in 2018-19.

"You need money for improving a football team, we cannot change that. It's not the only way but it's a big thing," Klopp told a news conference on Tuesday.

"If a team is developing well and you want to keep players and develop the squad [it] will not be cheaper the year after. That's the truth.

"I know that people probably didn't like what Poch said, but it's so easy from the outside looking in. From a club point of view, the best competition to win is the Premier League because then you are in the top four and you won a big thing.

"You want to win the other competitions, but that doesn't guarantee you the money for the next year. That's why top four is so important.

"You should ask the owners much more about what they think about that. They would probably say: 'Yes, it's really important.'"

Klopp's three-year reign on Merseyside is yet to produce any silverware, although Liverpool have reached the finals of the Champions League, Europa League and League Cup under his management.

"I know for supporters it's different, and that they want silverware. But if one year you win silverware and next year you are eighth in the table, nobody likes that and nobody talks about the silverware from last year," the Reds boss continued. "I understand 100 percent what Poch said.

"In a club like Liverpool you always have to go for everything, and I think the best thing we did that everyone can see is that we are around the decisive things again.

"For a couple of years it was not like this, now it's positive. But in the end, it is really important that you are in the Champions League next year as well."

Meanwhile, Klopp's defensive concerns have been somewhat eased as Virgil van Dijk and Fabinho are set to train ahead of Wednesday's match with Leicester City following fitness issues.

Van Dijk, who has not missed a Premier League game this season, picked up an illness after the club's recent trip to Dubai.

Fabinho limped off late on in the win over Crystal Palace on Jan. 19, with Joe Gomez and Trent Alexander-Arnold still sidelined through injury.

"Virg was a little bit ill, but he trained yesterday and will train today, so we will see," Klopp said. "Dejan [Lovren] is fine, Gini [Wijnaldum] trained [and] Fabinho will train today.

"Trent is getting closer and closer and it all looks very positive, but he will not be ready for tomorrow."

James Milner will be suspended for the Leicester game as a result of his sending off against Crystal Palace.