Klopp relishing prime-time showdown

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Liverpool’s clash with Manchester City on Sunday is the biggest match of the Premier League season so far – and Reds boss Jurgen Klopp is among those hoping to be entertained.

It is Liverpool’s second successive match against a probable title rival after last weekend’s draw with Chelsea at Stamford Bridge, which lived up to its billing.

Klopp said: “I turned to (Chelsea boss) Maurizio Sarri and I was smiling and he looked at me like, ‘You enjoyed that’. Yes, actually I do. This was a very good game and the City games (have been) very good games.

“It’s not always possible and it’s always hard work but that’s really an important thing. That’s why we have to try and create as often as possible and Pep’s teams are best at that, and I can admit that easily because it’s so obvious.

“We are not bad in a few other things and that’s why we were not the most comfortable opponents for City but that means nothing for Sunday. We need to be at 100 per cent, if not 110 per cent, to deal with the quality of City.”

Liverpool were the only major thorn in City’s side as they swept all before them last season, ending the chances of Pep Guardiola’s side going unbeaten in the Premier League with a 4-3 victory at Anfield and then winning both legs of the Champions League quarter-final.

They finished 25 points behind City in the league but the signs are it will be a much closer battle this season, with each team having only dropped two points from a possible 21.

Klopp played down the implications of the match, saying: “I don’t think it makes too much sense at the moment to think about the title. There are a lot of games to play.”

One concern for Liverpool fans is the form of talisman Mohamed Salah, who has only scored three goals in the first 10 games of the season and looked well below his best.

But that concern does not extend to Klopp, who said: “Expectation changed, that’s normal. He set a completely new standard last year.

Posted by Liverpool FC on Friday, October 5, 2018

“That’s the world out there. It’s how it is in my job; if I win games, I know everything about football, if I lose three in a row, people think I have no clue about football.

“Neither is true, the truth is always somewhere in between. I am completely relaxed. Mo has to work hard but that’s what he’s doing. It’s a completely normal situation, nothing to worry about.”

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