Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp and Manchester City counterpart Pep Guardiola both agree their Champions League quarter-final is far from over despite the Merseysiders’ 3-0 demolition job at Anfield.
A scintillating opening 45 minutes saw the visitors blown away with goals from Mohamed Salah, his 38th of the season, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Sadio Mane.
Unbelievably for a team which has scored 124 times his season Guardiola’s side failed to register a shot on target leaving them an uphill task at the Etihad Stadium next Tuesday.
But neither manager was taking the outcome for granted.
“Being 3-0 up is better than 3-0 down. We go to Manchester City and they want to strike back,” said Klopp.
“They didn’t play bad. They didn’t create the usual number of chances because we defend in a lot of moments outstandingly good.
“That is the only way to get anything against Manchester City and we did it and at the end it was 3-0 because of our quality, instead of 1-0. (But it is) half-time, no more.
“I am too long in the business. Years ago I played with Dortmund at Real Madrid, we lost 3-0, and everyone told it was done I was really angry about that and at home we won 2-0 with six or seven changes in the team and everyone who saw the game knew we should have won 5-0, 100 per cent.
“Being 3-0 down (City) need to open a bit so maybe we can use this but I know it is not decided.
“No-one was in the dressing room dancing around and celebrating after the half-time result. This leg is about 180 minutes or so.”
Guardiola remains optimistic his side can turn things around on home soil.
“In this room I think there is nobody except the guy talking to you (Guardiola himself) who believes we can go through. There are 90 minutes more, we are going to try,” said the City boss.
“In football it can happen. We have 90 minutes more in our stadium, with our people, with our families.
“The result is tough but I don’t have the feeling we played to concede that result. But in this competition the boxes make the difference and they were so good in those situations.”
The night got off to a bad start for City when their coach had windows smashed as it made its way through streets lined with thousands of fans on the approach to Anfield.
Flares were thrown at the bus and other missiles which smashed glass and resulted in City having to call for another vehicle to transport the team home.
Liverpool quickly issued a statement condemning the behaviour and apologising unreservedly and will now investigate the incident.
“Normally when the police know that is going to happen, they try to avoid it happening. I did not expect that from the Liverpool side, from the people,” added Guardiola.
“Nothing happened (but) the bus is destroyed.
“I didn’t expect that a club as prestigious as Liverpool would do these kind of things. Of course, it is not Liverpool, it is the people – it was not only one, only two, only three. Hopefully it doesn’t happen again.”