Liverpool goalkeeper Simon Mignolet. Photo: ANDREW COULDRIDGE/Reuters

LONDON - Simon Mignolet insisted Liverpool are well aware of their defensive frailties but the goalkeeper insisted they cannot forgo their attacking instincts in a bid to correct it.

The manner of goals conceded from set-pieces during Saturday’s 3-3 draw at Watford saw manager Jurgen Klopp heavily criticised. And Liverpool almost slipped up from a corner late on in their 2-1 Champions League win in Hoffenheim on Tuesday.

"Our natural game will be attacking, we know we have to fill that in with a really defensive spirit," Mignolet said. "We know that is where we have to improve. We are not blind. Everybody knows it in the dressing room, but there is no point throwing everything away.

"You cannot change a natural footballing side that goes forward, but we know we have to mix that in with a good defensive, aggressive spirit to make sure they don’t score the goals."

Klopp’s side face Crystal Palace on Saturday before the second leg of their Champions League play-off at Anfield on Wednesday. The slender lead they hold over Hoffenheim is largely thanks to Mignolet, who made a number of impressive stops and saved a weak Andrej Kramaric penalty in Germany. 

"When you play at the highest level there are always going to be things thrown at you," Mignolet added. "You have to be strong enough characters to deal with that. We can definitely be successful. We have to try to look in the mirror and say it is only us who can change it. We know how long we had to fight to get that fourth place in the league and we don’t want to throw it away." 

Meanwhile, Trent Alexander-Arnold, who scored the opener with a stunning free-kick in Germany, was lost for words after hearing how Steven Gerrard had lavished praised on him on BT Sport after the match.

Anfield legend Gerrard warned Nathaniel Clyne to ‘be careful’ given the 18-year-old’s performances at right back.

"It’s always good to get compliments from your idol and I am hoping to live up to his words," said Alexander-Arnold. "It is indescribable to be honest, special in so many different ways for me personally and I’ve definitely ticked the box off." 

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