Monday, April 22, 2019

Top at Christmas? We might need 105 points – Klopp

SoccerNews in English Premier League 22 Dec 2018

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Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp played down the significance of being top at Christmas, suggesting his team may need 105 points to win the Premier League.

A hard-fought 2-0 win over Wolves on Friday pushed Klopp’s side four points clear at the top, guaranteeing them first spot at Christmas.

Eight of the past nine teams to be top on Christmas Day have gone on to win the title, with Liverpool in 2013-14 the exception.

Klopp believes this season is different, with a record 105 points potentially needed to claim the title.

“I don’t know how much we need, how many any team needs this year,” he told a news conference.

“What is really different – because everybody asks me about the situation, first in the table and all that stuff – somebody said that the last four times the team that was first in the table at Christmas won the league, but was it ever such a tight race?

“I think if all the other boys [Tottenham and Chelsea] win 2-0 when they play, then I think three or four teams will have more than 40 points at Christmas, that is really exceptional.

“If you want to do the headline, ‘Klopp says you need 105 points to be champions’, do it. I don’t think about it. I didn’t think before about it and I don’t think now about it. I only just try to answer in a polite way.”

Manchester City can close the gap to Liverpool back to a point with a win at home to Crystal Palace on Saturday.

Only once in the previous nine seasons has there been a one-point gap at the top at Christmas – in 2013-14, when Liverpool and Arsenal were just ahead of City.

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