The difference in tempo between City’s sluggish performance in the first half and noticeable improvement after the break highlights the inconsistency that marks out City as a side with perhaps too many weaknesses to challenge at the very highest level. These will tell them that City’s record against Liverpool is one of the worst of any Premier League side against a fellow top flight opponent. It is the first time in my career as a manager when I feel now is the moment.
But Klopp, whose team visit City on Sunday, said the players at Guardiola’s disposal were far different, having been in charge of modern-day greats at Barca, and it made it especially hard in Europe. “But that is impossible today to do that”, he said. This is one of the rare games where I want organisation, be a little bit more negative but safe.
“He has yet to make a telling impact against his former club, with the player all but marked out of proceedings by James Milner when the sides met at Anfield on New Year’s Eve”, says Nakrani. “And putting him on the field for maybe 15 or 20 minutes, because I know when it was 2-1 I thought about that we might need him against the tall players of Monaco on the field to defend those kind of situations”.
“I am so happy with the squad”. Few guys can beat me at that and I am so proud of that.
I am not going as bold as last week with another 6/1 upset, but I think Sampdoria can win either half with a best price of 5/2.
Yay Toure, Pablo Zabaleta, Jesus Navas, Gael Clichy, Bacary Sagna and Willy Caballero are all due to be out of contract at the end of the season. “So if we don’t win, it’s four points [behind], so it would be better if we win”. It is such matches, which will test Klopp and Guardiola even more.
He added: “I love this club and I want to be here for a long, long time”. But I never promise titles, never in my life.
A win for City could see them move four points clear of the Reds, with a game in hand, whilst Jürgen Klopp’smen have a chance to leapfrog City in the table and give their chances of Champions League qualification another massive boost.
City took a two-goal advantage to France but lost 3-1 after Guardiola’s decision to go attacking against the Ligue 1 leaders backfired.
City can still win the FA Cup but a top-four finish is their only route into next season’s Champions League and to miss out would be unthinkable for Sheikh Mansour, who coveted Guardiola for years.
It must have escaped his notice that he’s spent the season playing at left-back because Alberto Moreno is the only other alternative. We were a little slow in everything we did in the first half, that’s why playing against Europe’s top teams is hard.
“It’s an important game before the worldwide team break against one of the best teams in the Premier League”.