“This season will be a tough race for the top four.”
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp admits that the battle to stay within the Premier League’s top four will be enough of a challenge before he can contemplate their title defence.
Liverpool welcomed rivals Manchester United at Anfield on Sunday evening in what promised to be an exciting matchup. However, the game failed up to its billing as both teams emerged with a point following a goalless draw.
The result leaves Man United two points clear at the top of the table and Liverpool in fourth — three points behind them.
That means Klopp’s team are just five points ahead of ninth-place West Ham and the German is wary of dropping more points in an unusual season such as this.
Liverpool are now unbeaten in their last 68 #PL matches at Anfield
— Premier League (@premierleague) January 18, 2021
Klopp warned that competition for the top four is likely to be tightly contested.
“In the season when we came second (2018-19), the day when I started really thinking about the title race was the day when it was clear that we are in the Champions League,” he said.
“I know my job and I know what I have to do. The most important thing is to qualify for the Champions League and I know how difficult it is. This season will be a tough race for the top four. True.
“I have no idea and I cannot decide how people look at it. I know that football fans in general are not the most patient species on this planet, so they want to win each football game.
“I’m not too different to that but I am long enough in the business to know that you have to go through more difficult periods as well.
“It’s not the most difficult in my life – not even close to it – so it’s just a situation where we play football and have had injuries, still have injuries but got used to the injuries we had in the long term and now players coming back.”