Jurgen Klopp wants Liverpool’s clash against Manchester City to be played at the Etihad, with the venue for the fixture still ‘under continued review’ amid safety concerns.
Premier League football has returned behind-closed-doors but several high-risk fixtures remain under review in terms of location, including a now potentially title-deciding clash between the Reds and reigning champions Man City scheduled for July 2.
Authorities have expressed concerns that fans could congregate outside of the stadium to celebrate a long-awaited title success for Liverpool, though Klopp is hopeful the tie will be played in Manchester given the logistical difficulties of moving the clash.
“Honestly, I would prefer it is in Manchester, otherwise it would be really difficult to organise,” Klopp said at his pre-match press conference.
“I don’t know how it would be but it would not be in Liverpool so it would mean we both have to go somewhere where we both need a hotel. That is the only issue.
“Apart from that, we play where they send us to. I would prefer it in Manchester but I don’t know about the process. I wait until the final information is confirmed, whether it is Manchester or not. It would be a challenge for both clubs.”
Klopp's Liverpool are pretty special 🥰 pic.twitter.com/GpEUDMASnO
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Klopp believes that fans will be respectful of the government guidelines and rulings for the Premier League‘s return, citing the example of Sunday’s Merseyside derby as evidence the ‘massive majority’ will behave responsibly.
“Maybe I don’t know enough about the history of English football to be concerned about the City game against us but the City stadium is pretty well located to close it down if someone was there close to the stadium, but I don’t see that,” Klopp said.
“The whole period we are in showed the massive majority of people really behaved responsibly and seriously and take this situation as it is: the discipline level is probably as high as never before so I was not worried about that. I know football fans since I was five years old and 98% of them are completely fine and have the same view on life as I have and love similar things that I do.
“At this moment in time, I was not worried about that but maybe I don’t know enough about it when we go there (to City) but Sunday was a good example, 100%.”
Manchester City council confirmed that a decision on whether the fixture will be played at the Etihad Stadium is ‘under continued review’, with a decision expected following the next meeting of the Safety Advisory Group on June 25.
“The decision on the match between Manchester City and Liverpool going ahead at the Etihad Stadium on July 2 is under continued review,” a spokesman for Manchester City Council said.
“The next meeting of the Safety Advisory Group is on Thursday (25 June) after which we may be able to provide an update.”