Neville rates Klopp’s final season so far as ‘scruffy’ Liverpool ‘career’ towards title disappointment

Joe Williams
Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp
Jurgen Klopp claps during a Premier League match.

Gary Neville insists that Liverpool are “more than par” for where people expected them to be before the start of the Premier League season.

The Reds’ unexpected 1-0 loss against Crystal Palace at Anfield on Sunday has seen many Liverpool fans lose hope that they can win the title this campaign.

Gary Neville: This is a monumental achievement for Jurgen Klopp

Despite the defeat meaning Liverpool are still only two points behind leaders Manchester City, Pep Guardiola’s men have a reputation for winning a majority of their matches at the business end of the season.

And Neville reckons that even if Liverpool don’t win the Premier League this season it has been a “monumental achievement” for Jurgen Klopp and his side.

“If you look at Liverpool, no one expected Liverpool to be anywhere near,” Neville said on his Sky Sports podcast.

“If you said that Liverpool would be two points off Manchester City with five or six games left to go, I’d be like ‘no chance’.

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“This is a monumental achievement I think for Jurgen Klopp, for them to be where they are. I said it before the international break and a few Liverpool fans had a go at me, but I felt like they were hanging on. I just felt like they were hanging on for dear life with emotion, with it being Klopp’s last season.

“And then when they went out of the FA Cup to Manchester United, there was this narrative that now the FA Cup has gone, now we can concentrate on Europe and the league, and after the Europa League result, now we can concentrate on the league.

“It’s not happening like that, but I still think Jurgen Klopp is getting the very best out of this Liverpool team and this Liverpool squad – and what we are now seeing is probably what they are, and they have overachieved to this point.

I think Arsenal have looked really smooth in the last couple of months and City have started to look really smooth as they always do. Whereas with Liverpool, you felt they were always the scruffy one of the three, yet they were hanging in there, calling upon the emotion of the Anfield crowd and Jurgen Klopp’s last season. Calling upon other things, other factors.”

Gary Neville: It was a bad day for them and maybe a bit of a reality check

Neville added: “The last few weeks have become a little tough for them but this is more than par for Liverpool where they are. I think this is par for Arsenal, this is where we thought they would be after the large investment but I don’t think anybody expected them to be so close to City at this stage of the season.

“It was a bad day for them and maybe a bit of a reality check. The FA Cup has gone, maybe Europe has gone and now maybe the Premier League title has gone – and Jurgen Klopp’s last season is going to potentially end up with the Carabao Cup.

“But they are only two points behind City and they are likely only to be concentrating on the Premier League. And they can be dangerous because they have got that something in them, Klopp has got something in him that can garner a response.

“They have been the ones that have beaten City in the last five or six years. They are still in it, but there is just a feeling that they are careering along the road a little bit.”