Kenny Dalglish’s Liverpool comments after City loss show Jurgen Klopp’s extreme progress

Former Liverpool players insist Klopp needs to win the Premier League as they face City

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Ten years ago when Liverpool travelled to the Etihad, Kenny Dalglish’s men were taught a lesson by Manchester City – but with Jurgen Klopp at the helm, there have been some drastic changes at Anfield. Now both clubs find themselves tussling at the top.

Liverpool and City face one another today in an epic clash with the Premier League title on the line. Just one point separates the two top-tier titans as we enter the business stretch of the season.

With both sides rarely dropping points over the course of the campaign, a win for either side at the Etihad this afternoon could see the victor go on to lift the trophy. It is borderline impossible to pick a favourite out of the pair, who are at the top of their games.

And while City can be considered the most dominant force in English football at the moment, the rise of Liverpool under Klopp cannot be understated. Assuming one of the two teams will win the league this year, the last side to break that dominance was Chelsea in 2017.

While in 2012, a Roberto Mancini-led City dominated Liverpool at the Etihad in a 3-0 result where the home side coasted to victory despite playing with 10 men for the last 20 minutes after a red card to Gareth Barry. City would go on to win the Premier League that season, something that Liverpool were powerless to prevent.

In the managerial hotseat at the time at Anfield was club legend Dalglish, who was eventually sacked as the Reds finished eighth in the Premier League. The Scotsman admitted that it was a result that Liverpool just had to take on the chin.

He said after the 3-0 defeat: “If you want to be successful, you have got to be clinical and that is one thing that was missing tonight from ourselves. They worked hard enough, passed it well but if you are not clinical you will not progress. That is why Manchester City are up there in the table because they are clinical.

“They are a very good side but we have to look at ourselves and see what we have done wrong. I think we have made a few mistakes that we would like to avoid in the future.

“We’ve come here [the Etihad] against a team that is top of the league and we have just got to take it on the chin and we have got to go and learn from it. It is not the mistakes that would be disappointing, it is if we do not learn from it.”

Well, it might be an understatement but Liverpool have certainly learned from their mistakes – though it might have taken them several seasons to get there. If the Reds win the title this year, it would rank among their best achievements while Klopp would go down in history.

And equally, while Pep Guardiola’s legacy is already ironclad, holding off the impressive force that is Liverpool to clinch the title would be one of the Catalan coach’s most celebrated victories – certainly in this country at least.

The Premier League is not just up for grabs with the FA Cup and Champions League still in both City and Liverpool’s sights. It would take a brave man to bet against either club cleaning up shop and winning the lot.

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