Jurgen Klopp has called Manchester City the ‘best team in Europe’ ahead of Liverpool’s meeting with the Premier League champions on Sunday.
The game sees first take on second with the Reds currently sitting at the top of the pile after six games, one point ahead of this weekend’s opponents. City come into the game off the back of a statement victory over Chelsea at Stamford Bridge last Saturday, though they were beaten 2-0 by Paris Saint-Germain in midweek.
Despite this, Klopp made it clear at his pre-match press conference that his side were in for a very tough task on Sunday.
“Big, big. Man City is an outstanding football team. They lost now against PSG. After Porto, I only knew the result and I said they probably will strike back,” he said.
“But they don’t have to actually. I saw now the game obviously and it was a really good football game. Man City played a really good game, which they lost in two situations, let me say it like this, or three, four situations when they didn’t use their chances and PSG could score.
“But when you think about the quality of the PSG team and the way Man City dominated them, that says a lot, that says a lot about the qualities. We have to play a proper football game, I would say, to have a chance. But it’s Anfield and we are really looking forward to it, I can say that.”
He added: “They are still really, for me, probably the best team in Europe in the moment and it’s a tough one. Last weekend, they played Chelsea and everybody was talking about Chelsea, how good they are – and they are good, oh my God, they are really good – but City was clear, clear better that day. So, that’s the team we will face and to win the game we have to score goals.”
Klopp has been dealt a serious blow before the game with Trent Alexander-Arnold set to miss out through injury.
James Milner deputised impressively at right-back in midweek but the German kept his cards close to his chest when asked how he would solve the selection dilemma against City.
“We have obviously James, we have Joe, we have Neco, we could change system – there are quite a few things,” he said.
“We have time to train this week, so there are a lot of things possible. But football is not the game anymore where you should have these one-on-one challenges for a long time.
“There are moments, seconds, but actually whoever plays there should be protected by at least two players in a right-back situation – that’s a centre-half and a midfielder, and a winger in an ideal world who is there around.
“So, whoever plays there should not be afraid that he will be alone for a long time against really good football players, no doubt about that. But I don’t know who will play for City in this moment, so it doesn’t make sense to think too much about it.
“We have to defend as a unit and if we do that, then it’s tricky for everybody. But there will be moments, of course, where individual quality will shine on both sides, and hopefully in the end it will be good enough for us.”