Jurgen Klopp has insisted that there is more at stake than local bragging rights ahead of Liverpool's huge Merseyside derby encounter with Everton on Sunday.
The Reds' meeting with Marco Silva's side at Goodison Park will provide the latest instalment in what is one of the most heated local rivalries in English football. Liverpool claimed a dramatic last-gasp victory over the Toffees last time out at Anfield in December.
@LFC have gained more points this season, than they finished with in:— SPORF (@Sporf) February 28, 2019
The Jurgen Klopp effect. pic.twitter.com/O30AA5wUzo
However, Liverpool's sights are also set on the title race with a one-point lead over champions Manchester City heading into the weekend's action. Ahead of Sunday's clash, via the Mirror, Klopp said: "In these games, I know we are the tip of the arrow, the ones who have to do it for the people.
"They cannot win in the office, these games. We have to do it on the pitch. That is what we have to try. We all understand it 100 per cent.
"It's true [we got momentum] from Divock's goal in December [against Everton], it changed the mood, the confidence, it was very important."
Jurgen Klopp has said that Trent Alexander Arnold kept the match ball after his three assists against Watford. Love it.— DaveOCKOP (@DaveOCKOP) March 1, 2019
Liverpool may also have to contend with some injury problems for the latest round of the Merseyside derby on Sunday, with star striker Roberto Firmino set to have a late fitness test ahead of the game after suffering with an ankle problem.
The injury saw the Brazilian miss out on Liverpool's 5-0 win over Watford on Wednesday, but Firmino has since returned to training on Thursday. Meanwhile, Klopp's defensive issues persist, with Dejan Lovren and Joe Gomez remaining as long-term absentees.
Sadio Mané on when Jurgen Klopp said he was playing striker vs Watford: “Gini said 'You have to score. If you score we'll call you Ronaldo, if not, you're s***!'." — Oliver Bond (@Oliver__Bond) March 1, 2019
However, Klopp said of Firmino: "Bobby has been running, and he is very positive, but we will have to see how he reacts."
The drama of Divock Origi's late winner in December's Merseyside derby sparked further controversy as Klopp celebrated the strike by running onto the pitch to celebrate with goalkeeper Alisson Becker, with the Liverpool boss handed an £8,000 for his actions.
Derby weekend. Let’s go.— Coral (@Coral) March 2, 2019
gbeng Spurs vs. Arsenal
gbeng Brentford vs. QPR
Red Star vs. Partizan
Lazio vs. Roma
Real Madrid vs. Barcelona
Porto vs. Benfica
gbeng Fulham vs. Chelsea
gbeng Everton vs. Liverpool pic.twitter.com/ZR8zJGJESe
"We all know my celebration," Klopp said of the previous encounter with Everton. "I will not do it again, but what happened that day was very surprising."
Source : 90min