Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp: We have to win every match to beat Man City in title race

Reds can open up an eight-point gap at the top of the Premier League if they beat Arsenal on Sunday

Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool side have won their last four Premier League games. AFP
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Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has warned his team they might have to win every game to overcome Manchester City in this season's Premier League title race.

The Merseyside club are currently five points clear of City and Arsenal – who Liverpool take on at the Emirates Stadium on Sunday.

With City not playing until they visit Brentford in the capital on Monday, the Reds can pull eight points clear of their title rivals, although Pep Guardiola's side will have two games in hand.

Liverpool know only too well how City often gain momentum in the run-in – they won their last 14 games in 2018-19 to pip their north-west rivals by a point and dropped just six points in the final 12 matches of 2021-22 to again win the title by a single point.

And last season, City went on a 25-match unbeaten run to overtake Arsenal and seal their third title in a row.

Liverpool and City are hitting form at the moment with both sides having won their last four matches, but Klopp knows there is no margin for error from the Reds.

“Shall I go to the boys in the dressing room and say, 'If we win against Arsenal we are eight points between us and them…'? Everybody knows that,” said the German, whose team have lost just once in the league.

“If we lose we are still two points ahead [if City win their game in hand as it stands], but then City are the big winner of a game they are not even involved in.

“That's outside talk and fine. Inside, we just focus on the things we have to do.

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“What we learnt over the years is if you want to be around City then you better win all your football games because they do. That's all.

“This is the time where City are dominating, that's how it is. They play incredible stuff and would probably consider themselves not playing their very best season but are where they are.

“We play a very good season and are in the moment ahead of City. We will try to make it as hard as somehow possible for everyone who wants to finish the season above us.

“That's the situation we are in. Arsenal, they beat us, they are definitely there. They don't beat us, ask other people. But there are so many games to come.”

While there is a doubt over striker Darwin Nunez, who has a foot injury, Liverpool are almost back to full strength fitness-wise with only Mohamed Salah (hamstring) and Wataru Endo (Asian Cup) still unavailable in the short-term.

Nunez set a Premier League record by hitting the woodwork four times during Wednesday's 4-1 win over Chelsea, but has been a key player in the Reds' rise to the top of the table with 11 goals and 11 assists in all competitions this season.

The Uruguayan would be a big miss for Klopp. “It was very painful after the game,” said the Liverpool manager. “[Darwin] left the stadium in a boot, and it was not a football boot. So nothing broken, X-ray clear. But swollen. We have to see if his foot can get back in a [football] boot, or not.”

Diogo Jota has also stepped up in Salah's absence with the Portuguese netting four times in his last four games to take his tally for the season to 13.

“He's a complete package,” added Klopp on Jota's form. “Can play all three positions up front which is special when Mohamed Salah is not here.

“That is how it is with strikers when you are doing well. You surf the wave and that's what he's doing. His goal against Chelsea was an unbelievable goal.”

Updated: February 03, 2024, 10:41 AM