Pep Guardiola has admitted ‘it’s not a surprise’ to hear Jurgen Klopp bring up Manchester City’s economic supremacy given his Liverpool counterpart’s willingness to bring up the subject historically.
The Reds secured an impressive 1-0 victory last weekend despite the disparity in form and finances, courtesy of Mo Salah’s phenomenal goal.
“Firstly, it’s not a surprise because it is not the first he has said it in the last five or six years,” the Spaniard told reporters in his pre-match presser, as relayed by The Telegraph.
The Merseysiders now find themselves in seventh place, only four points fourth-placed Chelsea in the Premier League table – an encouraging sight ahead of the Qatar World Cup.
Those at the Sky Blues, fans and staff included, will be keen to move away from such murky waters for a number of reasons that Klopp didn’t go into much detail over, like the human rights record of the UAE (of which Sheikh Mansour’s brother, Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, is president).
It’s telling that the 55-year-old’s words struck such a nerve regardless that accusations of xenophobia slipped off the tongue of an unnamed official at Manchester City.
Such claims are, of course, absolute nonsense in light of the former Borussia Dortmund boss’ unblemished track record and personal beliefs.
Whilst we can appreciate that perhaps Guardiola wouldn’t feel comfortable biting the hand that feeds at the Etihad, we hope he can understand where his colleague’s comments are coming from.