Klopp sympathises with Ten Hag ahead of Liverpool's clash with Man United

Reds manager says he would have preferred Monday's opponents to be in better form

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Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp said he sympathised with Manchester United's precarious situation as Erik ten Hag looks to bring their Premier League campaign back on track after a horror start.

United sit bottom of the Premier League after losing their opening two games of the season. Ten Hag's men conceded four times inside 35 minutes in losing 4-0 at Brentford last weekend.

Liverpool inflicted the same misery on United last season, winning 5-0 at Old Trafford and 4-0 at Anfield in their two meetings.

As the two teams prepare to face off on Monday, Klopp said he would have been happier had United been coming into what he described as a heavyweight clash in better form.

"When we had the two results last year I knew already in that moment it would not help for next year. It was always like this," said Klopp.

"It just helps United to be even more motivated, if that's possible in the situations we are in. I would prefer to play them after they won 5-0, definitely. That is how it is, but it is not dreamland and we have to take it like it is.

"I think the whole world will watch it, it's Monday night anyway, everybody can watch it, and you will see how these two heavyweights deal with the situation. I would watch it."

Liverpool's title hopes have already been hit by draws against Fulham and Crystal Palace to leave Klopp's men four points adrift of defending champions Manchester City.

However, Liverpool's woes of an early season injury crisis and the absence of Darwin Nunez due to his ill-discipline that cost the Uruguayan a red card on his home debut, pale into insignificance compared to United's troubles.

A large-scale protest by United fans is planned before kick-off aimed at the club's owners, the Glazer family.

Elon Musk joked he was buying the Red Devils this week, while Britain's richest man Jim Ratcliffe has signalled his interest.

However, Liverpool defender Virgil van Dijk isn’t taking anything for granted.

“They are a good team, in my opinion,” Van Dijk said. “They have good players all over the pitch.

“Obviously they’re not in the best situation, confidence-wise, probably, but it’s the perfect game to turn it around for them.”

Updated: August 20, 2022, 8:30 AM
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