Here are your Manchester City headlines for Monday evening, March 7.
Jurgen Klopp agrees with Pep Guardiola on Liverpool FC vs Man City rivalry
Jurgen Klopp says Liverpool would have been Premier League champions by February in recent years were it not for Manchester City, as he repaid a compliment from Pep Guardiola this weekend.
Liverpool moved back to within three points of City on Saturday with both teams level on points, but the Blues beat Manchester United to extend the gap again having played a game more. After that win, which was seen by many on Merseyside as a potential banana-skin for City, Guardiola opted to praise Liverpool when asked about the title race.
READ MORE: Klopp agrees with Guardiola
“I said many times, the biggest success for a manager is after winning three Premier Leagues in four years, we still run like we run and are there to win again,” he said. “Normally you have bad thoughts and you are confused thinking you are like you are not. Still we are humble enough every single training and every single game, do it to be there. After you can win or lose.
“These guys are still there, if we can’t do it at the end, it’s because we have the toughest opponent I’ve faced in my 12, 13 years as a manager.”
Kevin De Bruyne admits Man City’s striker-less formation suits his style
Pep Guardiola made it plain this week that Manchester City will be in hot pursuit of a striker when the summer transfer window opens. With the Blues smashing neighbors Manchester United to re-open their six-point lead at the top of the Premier League, with one foot in the Champions League quarter-final and already in the last eight of the FA Cup, adding another expensive player might seem like gilding the lily.
Both this season and last, when Sergio Aguero missed most of the campaign through injury, the Blues have made light of doing without a goalscoring striker, flying in the face of traditional English football wisdom. In fact they have been so good without a striker that United tried to copy them in the derby, going without a striker themselves – and ended up looking like a poor tribute act.
But, while Guardiola clearly believes a natural goalscorer would take his team up another level, his midfield general Kevin De Bruyne has made it plain that he quite enjoys the freedom that the Blues’ fluid false nine system brings, and thinks that it lends itself well to City’s possession football. De Bruyne was brilliant in turning City defense into attack during that derby, surging into the space between United’s midfield and defence, linking with false nine Phil Foden and twice arriving late in the box to land killer blows on the Reds.
And he admitted afterwards that he quite likes playing without a striker: “It is a good way to keep the ball in possession. Sometimes there are games where you maybe need a striker, but it depends on how the opponent plays.
Read KDB’s full quotes here.
Gary Neville identifies ‘massive’ Liverpool threat to Man City in Premier League title race
Gary Neville believes Liverpool have a major advantage over Manchester City which will make them a “real threat” in the Premier League title race.
City maintained their six-point advantage over their rivals as they eased past Manchester United at the Etihad on Sunday. Kevin De Bruyne’s first-half double and Riyad Mahrez’s second-half brace saw Pep Guardiola’s side brush aside their neighbours, and it could have been much more.
Since suffering their defeat to Tottenham last month, City have gone on to win all of their subsequent games as they’ve managed to remain ahead of Liverpool. The Reds had narrowed the gap at the top to three points at one point, and still have a game in hand in order to do the same again.
With the two sides meeting at the Etihad next month, the encounter looks set to have a huge impact on the title race, with neither team looking likely to drop points along the way. It’s certainly not the first time City and Liverpool have been locked in a tussle for the title over the last few years.
You can read Neville’s quotes here.
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George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.