Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has labelled his Liverpool rival Jurgen Klopp a huge competitor that ‘makes world football a better place’.
The two rivals will renew their rivalry when their respective sides clash at the Etihad Stadium on Sunday night.
Manchester City are top of the log, with Liverpool who are in second position a point behind the leaders.
“I think Jurgen makes world football a better place to be. He is of course a huge competitor but it is good,” Guardiola told reporters on Friday.
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“I try to have a good relation with all the managers. He knows, we spoke together in Germany, the message and the way his teams play. He’s a good guy and I have no problems with him. As he says many times we are a rich club so the wine [after the game] will be perfect!”
Guardiola has also spoken about the ‘fascinating’ rivalry between the two clubs and believes they are both in a strong position to challenge together at the highest level for several years to come, comparing their potential longevity with Tennis legends Rodger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic.
“Nadal, Federer and Djokovic was 20 years and we (Man City’s rivalry with Liverpool) are five years. Footballers run quicker and to maintain success is more difficult than other sports,” Guardiola added.
“When I retire and watch and play golf I remember here the biggest rivalry was Liverpool. When you achieve 100 points and 98 points you need someone to push from behind to be so close. You have to make another step.
“I think Liverpool, knowing our club and chairman, we want to grow. I’m sure Liverpool and other teams are going to try to do it. The most credit I give is consistency through the years. Both have had four or five years. That’s why Federer, Nadal, Djokovic have been at the top for so long. Arriving at these stages to win the titles, we try to do it.”
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