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Published: Sun, January 01, 2017
Sport | By Billy Aguilar

I have learned a lot from Jurgen Klopp, says Pep Guardiola

I have learned a lot from Jurgen Klopp, says Pep Guardiola

(Big ups to the league officials who saw that and signed off on it.) But Liverpool are used to being underestimated at this point, and if this were easy it wouldn't be worth doing. It's a vibrant New Year's Eve cocktail that should make for a thrilling night of football on BT Sport.

Points from Liverpool's 12 matches involving the Premier League top six, a mini league which the Reds top.

Chelsea is certain to be a top contender after a fabulous season in which they lead with 46 points gained in 18 games.

"It's more important for Liverpool to stay in touch with Chelsea".

Liverpool have won their last three Premier League games in a row. This game tends to have goals too, with 20 in the last in the Premier League.

Guardiola shrugged off suggestions Klopp's high-energy approach will burn his players out before the end of the title race, adding: "What he did in Dortmund, he is able to maintain that level for a season".

Fernandinho is a model of consistency, but the Brazilian rarely let Pellegrini down and his improvement this season may merely be a result of having a more pivotal role in the usual absence of Yaya Toure.

City have conceded 11 away goals this season and that's one more than Middlesbrough.

John Stones started brightly but is now showing the defensive lapses that cursed his rise at Everton.

The visitors continued dominate possession in the second half, with Raheem Sterling seeing a lot of the ball down the right flank, although chances were hard to come by.

Meanwhile, the Reds had some clear communication problems as the game wore on, and City's best opportunity came courtesy of yet another Simon Mignolet brainfart, when the Belgian made a decision to try out some cute juggling tricks while caught in no-man's land with Sergio Agüero literally breathing down his neck.

Georginio Wijnaldum was the hero as his goal separated the two sides, and the Dutchman was rightly named Man of the Match as he stood out from the pack with his efforts in midfield.

After their back to back losses to Chelsea and Leicester City, Manchester City have rebounded lately with three consecutive wins, including a 2-1 win over Arsenal. Will we see the Liverpool who eviscerated Stoke City 4-1 to chill the bones of a very cold-looking, flat-capped but suitably impressed Guardiola at Anfield on Monday?

And so, six months into his reign, Guardiola is still attempting to find all the pieces to fix his jigsaw into place.

City, though, considerably improved, dominating possession and looking far more risky going forward.

Glenn is ESPN FC's Liverpool correspondent.

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