Liverpool's Klopp wary of wounded Man Utd ahead of Anfield clash

AFP , Friday 15 Dec 2023

Jurgen Klopp says he remains wary of Manchester United despite the poor form of Liverpool's bitter rivals as the clubs prepare to face each other at Anfield on Sunday.

Liverpool's German manager Jurgen Klopp greets the public at the end of the UEFA Europa League football match between Union Saint Gilloise and Liverpool FC at the Lotto Park in Brussels on December 14, 2023. Photo: AFP


Klopp's team are top of the Premier League table after 16 matches -- already 10 points clear of Erik ten Hag's men, in sixth place.

United were humiliated 7-0 at Anfield in March in the biggest defeat for either side in the history of meetings between the clubs, who have won a combined 39 English top-flight titles.

United have lost 12 of their 24 games in all competitions in the current campaign and this week were dumped out of the Champions League at the group stage.

With the exception of last season's 2-1 win at Old Trafford, United's recent record against Liverpool is dire -- they have lost four of the past five meetings, conceding 21 goals in the process.

But Klopp still remains wary of the old enemy and said last season's humbling at Anfield could inspire Liverpool's opponents.

"I never like it when the headlines about United are not great before we play because it's like 'OK, then it is the game where they can put everything right'," he said.

"I don't follow United closely enough to know exactly what the problem is there but I saw that Erik ten Hag became manager of the month last month and saw they were the team in form results-wise in the last month so how can it be all wrong? I just don't understand it.

"The 7-0, we knew that day it was a freak result that happens once in a lifetime. If it helps anybody for the next game it is the team who lost 7-0 and not the team who won 7-0."

The German said inflicting more pain on Liverpool's long-time adversary was not a motivating factor.

"If you take it all out of consideration and just play a football game against the historical rival of Liverpool at home at Anfield, that itself must make it a special game and that's what I want to see from us, a special game," he added.

"It is a home game. It is for the people. We know what it means. No one would expect us not to care. We care a lot (but) we cannot go nuts before the game already."

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