Jordan Ibe comes of the bench to score the only goal as Liverpool defeated Stoke City 1-0 in League Cup at the Britannia Stadium.
Klopp’s side grabbed a narrow but potentially priceless first leg advantage, with the second leg to be played on Januuary 26.
Liverpool’s current tally of 22 goals in 20 league matches is the lowest in their history and their starting lineup, with Christian Benteke dropped, had just nine to their credit this season — Stoke’s Marko Arnautovic started with seven to himself.
The winner of the tie will book a date with either of Manchester City or Everton who play the first leg of their semi-final at Goodison Park on Wednesday.
Philippe Coutinho and Dejan Lovren succumbed to hamstring problems in a high-paced first half, while Toure was limping at the finish.
“It’s a strange feeling,” Liverpool’s German coach told Sky Sports. “I’m proud as it was a perfect reaction from the last game (a 2-0 defeat to West Ham United).
“But of course we have two bad injuries and that’s why I’m not lucky tonight.”
Everton hold the advantage in the League Cup semi-final against Manchester City after Romelu Lukaku’s 19th goal of the season gave them a victory in the first leg at Goodison Park.
City looked to have secured a draw with 14 minutes left, when Jesus Navas finished a sweeping counter attack following brilliant work by Sergio Aguero.
That equaliser cancelled out Ramiro Funes Mori’s opener for Everton on the stroke of half-time.
It was Lukaku’s 12th goal in 12 games, fourth goal in five League Cup appearances this season.
JesusNavas scored his first goal for City since September 2014 (v Sheffield Wednesday) – a wait of 66 games in all competitions for the club.
This is the first time Pellegrini has lost to Everton as Manchester City boss (W4 D1).
Roberto Martinez won just his second game against Manchester City as a manager, the other being the 2013 FA Cup final (W2 D2 L11).
“Everton’s first goal was absolutely offside and it was a clear penalty when Jesus Navas was fouled,”Pellegrini said.”I didn’t speak to the referee after the game – they were both clear.
“To lose 2-1 is a bad result but it just means we have to win 1-0 at home. I still think we are able to play in the Capital One Cup final.”
Both teams are in FA Cup action this weekend, with Everton hosting Dagenham and Redbridge, and Manchester City travelling to Norwich. City and Everton meet again in the Premier League at Etihad Stadium next Wednesday.