Manchester City’s latest blockbuster signing – Rodri from Atletico Madrid – was recently asked whether Liverpool and City have a proper rivalry.
As a Liverpool fan myself, I am biased, but I’d suggest that we’re only rivals in the sense that we both want the same thing. If anything, I feel as if Real Madrid are more of a rival than City now.
Give it a few more years, and I may change my tone, but if you ask a City fan then I’d put money on it being more likely they say ‘yes’ than not.
City’s meteoric rise in the Premier League has been sudden, and so they’re not facing off against the old foes that they built rivalries with.
Manchester United obviously stand out, but teams like Oldham, Bolton and Stockport aren’t anywhere near the Citizens and so their rivalries are bound to quieten down.
So Rodi was asked whether Liverpool are City’s rivals. “I don’t know, I had never been in the city before, I don’t know how people in the city feel,” he told BBC Sport.
“But the team to beat is Liverpool now and that has been seen the last two seasons. They are the champions of Europe so everyone wants to beat them, not just us.
“They’re a great team, they have improved a lot of things, they’re a very good team, and they’re the best team in England and in Europe.”
Kind and honest words from Rodri – something I’m sure the Manc faithful will kick out of him soon enough. The Spaniard has already put his foot in it.
He told reporters that Pep Guardiola has been teaching him to commit tactical fouls, despite the City boss previously saying he’d never tell his players to purposely foul the opposition.