Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp has warned Tottenham they cannot afford to drop points when they visit Anfield in the Premier League on Saturday.
Spurs are five points behind Leicester City at the top of the table with seven matches remaining and face a crucial pair of matches against the Reds and Manchester United in their next two outings.
Ninth-placed Liverpool are not involved in the title race – something Klopp wants to change in the seasons ahead – but he thinks that could benefit his team for this particular encounter.
“For Spurs it is something like a final, it makes sense for us to think about it,” he said at his pre-match media conference.
“We have to be ready. Now everyone knows how strong Tottenham is. It’s an important game for both sides, but they have to win to put pressure on Leicester.
“This is a decisive time for Tottenham. This is good opportunity for them to be champions. They have had good situation with injuries.
“I like stories like this but I like the Leicester story too. I know things like this are possible. I don’t want to make pressure on Tottenham but this is a pretty good year to become champion.
“We will see who handles the pressure better. It’s only a few games, but each point and each game is much more important now.
“It’s a big pressure, positive pressure. They are in the race and always fight to the last minute. If Arsenal have enough points in the end then they will deserve it as well.
“Both Spurs and Leicester have handled it well. Hopefully in future we can be more of a part in the title race than we are this season.
“If I wasn’t the manager of Liverpool maybe I could enjoy a bit more! This is a pretty good year to become champion – I don’t know what will happen next year.”
Klopp’s first game in charge of LIverpool was a 0-0 draw at Tottenham in October and the ex-Borussia Dortmund boss feels he has learned so much since then.
“It’s a massive difference,” he added. “I know much more about everything – we have had an intensive time since but that game was very exciting.
“Liverpool v Tottenham. It’s not usually a birthday party. It will be a hard fight.
“I watch football and I see the brilliant progress of Tottenham, the fantastic development of players. It’s not only Harry Kane, it’s exceptional how strong they are.”
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