Ahead of Manchester City’s Premier League clash, Guardiola and Klopp’s good feelings


Pep Guardiola and Jürgen Klopp nurture a healthy rivalry. At the head respectively of Manchester City and Liverpool, the two teams that fight season after season for the Premier League title, the two coaches maintain a deep mutual respect. They proved it again on Friday at a press conference, two days before the clash between the first two in the Premier League standings on Sunday (5:30 p.m.).

 » Pep is the best coach in the world. I think we all agree on that and it’s certainly a coincidence that it hasn’t worked out for him in the Champions League so far. “Said Klopp, the Reds coach, in reference to Guardiola’s unsuccessful European quest since 2016 and his arrival on the Mancunian bench.

Pep Guardiola with Bernardo Silva during Manchester City's loss to Chelsea in the Champions League final, May 29, 2021. (S. Stacpoole/Presse Sports)

Pep Guardiola with Bernardo Silva during Manchester City’s loss to Chelsea in the Champions League final, May 29, 2021. (S. Stacpoole/Presse Sports)

Two days before a particularly anticipated match, the German technician believes that City are the toughest opponent to face.  » There is no game in the world like the one developed by City, because they are good at just about every part of the game. They don’t have any real weaknesses. »

A Mutually Beneficial Rivalry

Klopp’s men, who remain on ten consecutive league victories, are only one point behind the Sky Blues eight games from the end of the season. Despite this momentum, the Liverpool manager remains cautious and believes Sunday’s clash will not be decisive regardless of the outcome.  » If we lose, we will be four points. And if people think it’s over then I can’t do anything about it, but I know no one at City will see it that way “Blowed the German coach.

23

This will be the 23rd meeting in all competitions between Pep Guardiola and Jürgen Klopp. As it stands, the record is perfectly balanced between the two men: 9 wins each and 4 draws.

Klopp also recalled how the rivalry with the Citizens had advanced the two teams, taking them to another dimension.  » We pushed each other to an incredible number of points. Madness. I never would have thought that this kind of thing was possible, especially in this championship.t”, admitted the former coach of Borussia Dortmund.

“Liverpool? My biggest rival”

Guardiola, on the other hand, sees his Liverpool counterpart as his “ biggest rival « .  » Jürgen, as a manager, has been the biggest rival I’ve ever had in my career and I think what both teams offer is good for football. I will remember my time here when I retire playing golf. I will remember that my biggest rival was Liverpool, that’s for sure. »

A victory for the Sky Blues this weekend would be a big step towards preserving their title. But if Liverpool win, the Reds will take the lead in the league. The ex-Barça coach, however, wanted to minimize the importance of Sunday’s match:  » These three points will be very important, but there will still be seven matches, 21 points, and a lot of things with the Champions League and the FA Cup « , did he declare.

After this match, City and Liverpool will meet again at least once, in the FA Cup semi-final on April 16. The two teams could also meet in the Champions League final on May 28, at the Stade de France.

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