Pep Guardiola has credited Jurgen Klopp for making him ‘a better manager’ as Manchester City prepare to face Liverpool this weekend.
The Premier League champions travel to Liverpool on Sunday in a huge showdown between the division’s top two, the clash the latest instalment of a modern rivalry between two teams that have competed directly for silverware in recent seasons.
Liverpool and Manchester City have shared the past four Premier League titles between them, with City reclaiming the championship last season after the Reds’ 2019/20 success under Klopp.
Guardiola believes Klopp and his side have helped him become a better manager, suggesting that the competition from Liverpool has forced him to evolve and develop.
“Jurgen Klopp’s teams helped me to be a better manager,” Guardiola said at his pre-match press conference. “He put me another level, to think about it, to prove myself, to be a better manager. That is the reason why I am still in this business.
“Since I arrived here – maybe not the first year – Liverpool were always there.
“The last four years, all the time, we were both there. It’s the biggest compliment that both clubs were there.
“But in the Premier League there are not just one or two, there are many teams who can fight for the league.”
Guardiola discussed the modern rivalry between the sides and says it is an ‘honour’ to compete alongside the Merseyside club, labelling Liverpool as ‘one of the historic teams in England’.
“For us, it’s an honour to be a rival with Liverpool,” he said. “Decades ago we weren’t rivals to them.
“For many years we try to compete with these legendary clubs so it’s an honour. Hopefully for them too. To compete against one of the historic teams in England that’s nice for us.”