With seven points between the two sides, this clash could really be the ‘all-defining game’ in the Premier League title race.
Manager Pep Guardiola believes Manchester City have an excellent opportunity to breathe new life into their Premier League defence when they take on Liverpool at the Etihad on Thursday.
Recent losses against Crystal Palace and Leicester have left City seven points behind the league leaders, but Guardiola insists his focus has not changed.
“I have the feeling it is a big opportunity for us to reduce the gap but our focus is the same,” he said. “Everybody asks what we are going to do if we lose but we are going to try to make our game and to win it.
“At the moment Liverpool are the best team in Europe for the way they play and control the details in their game. It’s a good challenge for us.”
Meanwhile, ahead of his side’s trip to the Etihad, Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp insisted City remain the best team in the world.
The Reds go into the meeting with a seven-point lead over their title rivals at the top of the Premier League.
Klopp, though, was keen to push aside the hype, saying he saw it “as a normal game against Manchester City”.
He added: “A very difficult one, one of the most difficult games you can play in the modern football world. We felt that plenty of times. It’s a really strong football team with an outstanding manager.
“We have to be prepared as good as possible, we have to be brave, we have to be full of desire, anger, like in all the other games. But with the knowledge the opponent is, for me, still the best team in the world. Only the points changed, not the preparation for the game.”