Wednesday 19 September 2018

Jurgen Klopp issues rallying call to his Liverpool players as he pays Man City the ultimate compliment

Jurgen Klopp
Jurgen Klopp
Kevin Palmer

Kevin Palmer

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has urged his players to ‘write their own history’ as they look to follow in some iconic footsteps by winning this season’s Champions League.

Manchester City will be visiting Anfield on Wednesday night in a clash that sees the two most dynamic teams in the Premier League go head-to-head, with Liverpool aiming to move closer towards adding to their five wins in Europe’s elite competition.

Klopp is aware of what success in the Champions League could mean for his class of 2018 and has urged them to seize the moment against a side they beat 4-3 in the Premier League at Anfield in January.

"This club is already so full of history. We have to write our own history," declared Klopp.

"I meet people who can tell me each goal Liverpool scored 37 years ago in the 56th minute. And there are 10 players that did that and they can say their names.

"I like that but we need to create our own history. I did that a lot in the past with my former teams, not that Dortmund had a lot of history, but we did that before cup games or whatever.

"But at some point you need to do your own things. The boys are ready. You could see after the last game - we are ready for this.

"It’s just a big job to do. We want to go as far as we can in this competition. One team will be happy while others will be disappointed. That’s it. You need to be prepared for that.

"There’s no need to make the game bigger than it is. It’s the quarter-final of the Champions League, so that’s how it is."

Klopp’s rallying cry to his players came as he offered the ultimate praise for Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City team, as he suggested they are the finest club side in the game this year.

"It’s clear that we will have to face the best team in the world," he declared.

"There are no easy opponents at this stage.

"They will be deserved champions of the Premier League. But in football it’s about being perfectly prepared for the next game. It’s not about yesterday, it’s about tomorrow. They are the best, but we can beat the best.

"We are in a good moment. City have a chance because they can win wherever they go, but we can win football games as well and that is the only thing I’m interested in.

"I like the difficult jobs because for a manager it is the most interesting. To prepare as well as possible. Mentally and physically. Let’s go - nothing can happen. The worst thing that happens is we lose a football game. It’s a big opportunity and we will try everything.

"We know what we have to do, but it’s about doing it. It’s a big game against one of the best teams in the Europe, if not the best at this moment.

"We are not coincidentally in the quarter-finals. We qualified for that. We beat Man City here and we knew before the game it was possible, but difficult. It’s the same again.

"Hoping of a clean sheet does not make too much sense. You need to be ready to deal with situations. You need the balls to be able to use the space they give you. We have to give 100 per cent defensively and offensively.

"The pitch is too big to organise perfectly, for them as well. With our skills we can cause problems. That’s what makes it interesting."

Klopp also confirmed defender Joel Matip is out for the rest of this season with a thigh problem sustained against Crystal Palace last Saturday.

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