Gary Neville says Liverpool need more titles next season before they can be considered ‘a great side’ despite their success in recent campaigns.
Liverpool were crowned as champions of England for the first time in three decades after a record-breaking season for Jurgen Klopp’s side, winning a maiden Premier League title with a record seven games to spare following a season of remarkable consistency.
Their long-awaited league title success followed Champions League glory last season as the Reds embarked on a period of trophy success, adding the UEFA Super Cup and Club World Cup throughout 2019 before winning the Premier League.
Neville – who won eight league titles in his time as a player – believes the Merseyside club have started to ‘create an era’ of success at Anfield, but believes further major honours must follow if the club are to be considered amongst the very best.
“What Liverpool have done in the last three seasons is started to create an era,” Neville said on Sky Sports.
“Getting to the Champions League final, winning a Champions League, winning a league, they are in the midst of something here.
“What Jurgen Klopp has done at Liverpool has been simply outstanding, he hasn’t had the resources of Pep Guardiola, the resources of the Manchester United managers over the past seven years but, with laser focus and precision-based recruitment, he’s developed a great team.
“If Liverpool can win the league again next year, get to another Champions League final or do a domestic double, that is when we’ll be starting to talk about really great side.”
? "It's a little bit like Christmas, I've never touched a Premier League trophy before"
Jurgen Klopp is excited about getting his hands on the Premier League trophy tonight pic.twitter.com/O23AU1y2HD
— Football Daily (@footballdaily) July 22, 2020
Neville was part of the Manchester United side which dominated the first two decades of the Premier League and has reflected on how the club maintained their standard, discussing how Sir Alex Ferguson remodelled and adapted his winning sides to ensure continued success at Old Trafford.
“What Sir Alex Ferguson was able to do at Manchester United was create a great side that won over three or four-year periods and then remodelled and adapted it to be able to win again for the next three or four-year period,” he added.
“Sir Alex continually did that over a period of 20 years, that was obviously the genius of the man and why he will be regarded as the greatest manager.
“There are many teams, players, athletes that have had one-off success and titles, and they are great achievements in their own right, but when you continually do it over a period of time is when you establish greatness.”
Neville believes the hardest challenge for Klopp will now be motivating his players to maintain their levels, admitting the Reds can ill-afford to drop by even ‘two or three per cent’ as rival sides bid to bridge the gap.
“Klopp is going to have to whip that horse a little bit harder next season to let them know they cannot drop by two or three per cent because City and other clubs will be back at them again.
“City have shown them the standard, Liverpool have got there, now they have to maintain it.”
Liverpool will finally get their hands on the trophy after their game against Champions League chasing Chelsea this evening.