Belfast Telegraph

Jurgen Klopp hits back at Gary Neville after Manchester United hero's Champions League advice

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has responded to Gary Neville's advice that the Reds should 'kick (the Champions League) into touch'.

In an interview with the Times, the former Manchester United defender hinted that a group stage exit for Liverpool could aid their bid to end almost three decades without a league title.

"The Champions League - if I was Liverpool, I would kick it into touch," he said. "I know that’s very hard to do but if they could go into February, March, April without it, I think they could have a real chance if they had free weeks.

"Why? I think their method is exhausting for the front three. The drop in quality below them, if there are injuries or playing Wednesday, Saturday, I think it will take its toll."

But Jurgen Klopp has responded in puzzled fashion, claiming that pundit Neville's role of 'sitting in an office talking about football' is in contrast to working as a manager.

"How should that work? We don't play Champions League, or what?" he said. "Gary should come over and tell me exactly how that works.

"How do you prepare for a game when you don't focus on it? Bring your kids into the Champions League, that would be funny.

"I don't know what he means, to be honest. We have to play football. To focus on one competition can only be if you are out, or nearly out, or if it’s late in the season.

“Last year I don’t think even think Gary would have said ‘let City win in the Champions League’. Sitting in an office talking about football is different to doing the job.”

Belfast Telegraph Digital

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