The Liverpool manager is unwilling to add another “very” to another very, very important game.
Jürgen Klopp knows the consequences of dropping points to Manchester City on Sunday. Liverpool’s unbeaten run in the Premier League is steady rolling but Pep Guardiola is not about to relinquish the title to the Reds despite his side’s below-standards start the season.
Despite the pressure of gifting City a foothold in the title race this weekend, Klopp explains at his pre-City press conference that this new tradition of loading 30 years of title expectation onto every Liverpool league match is unnecessary.
“In the last nearly 2 years, it feels like, each game we play is the most decisive of the season,” said Klopp. “There’s not one where anybody said, ‘we can lose that.’
“First, we are fighting for qualifying for the Champions League, then trying to win the title, trying to go to the final again. Nothing changes. You cannot make games bigger than they are already
“It’s a very, very important game but we cannot make it more important than very, very important. That’s how it is.
“It’s a big game. Two really good teams face each other. Best news, it’s at Anfield, which is really cool. Flood lights, really cool. So, everything is prepared for a good football game.”
Only six points separate Liverpool and City in the table, a spread which, we know from last season, can be overcome in the blink of an eye. A Liverpool loss closes that gap to three points. A win puts the Reds nine points clear. Yowzer. Unfortunately for Klopp, as long as City keeps winning their games, every Liverpool match could be the most decisive of the season.