Jurgen Klopp has disclosed that Liverpool cannot compete with Premier League rivals Manchester City and Newcastle United financially, declaring “some clubs have a ceiling”.
Liverpool go into Sunday’s encounter with City trailing the champions by 13 points, having made their worst start to a league campaign since 2012 – when they took nine points from their first eight games.
Pep Guardiola’s side beat Liverpool to the Premier League title by just one point last season, and have gone from strength to strength since the arrival of Erling Haaland from Borussia Dortmund.
Meanwhile, with Newcastle enjoying a strong start to their first full season under their hugely wealthy Saudi owners, boss Eddie Howe declared there was “no ceiling” for the Magpies on Friday.
Asked how Liverpool could keep pace with City, Klopp said they were one of three clubs in world football operating without any economic restraints.
“You will not like the answer, and you all have the answer already,” Klopp said. “Nobody can compete with City. You have the best team in the world, and you put in the best striker on the market.
“No matter what it costs, they just do it. I know City will not like it, nobody will like it. Liverpool can not act like them. It’s not possible.
“It’s just clear. There are three clubs in world football that can do what they want, financially. It’s legal and everything, fine. But it’s a fact.
“It’s not a problem at all for me, it is what it is. But don’t ask me that question. You all should know it, it’s not possible to deal with that, and it will be like this.
“I hear now at Newcastle they said, ‘there’s no ceiling for this club’. He’s absolutely right, there’s no ceiling for Newcastle. Congratulations, some other clubs have ceilings.”
Haaland has played a massive role in City’s unbeaten start to the season since his big-money move, scoring 20 goals in 13 appearances for the club.
Pre-season saw comparisons drawn between Haaland and Liverpool’s new frontman Darwin Nunez, who has only scored two Premier League goals, but Klopp wants the Uruguayan to focus on his own game.
“I’ll say it like this: I think Darwin Nunez would have scored a couple more goals if he could play in the centre for Man City this season,” Klopp said.
“He would be a good striker for them too, finishing the situations off. We have to improve our game to bring more situations.
“I don’t know. I hope he’s not in a process where he compares himself with Erling Haaland, but I think he’s really making steps here. You could really see in his face and everything, his goal [in a 7-1 thrashing of Rangers on Wednesday] was really important to him.
“You need these moments, I hope he’s not doing that or thinking about that. I don’t see that. We are in our situation and want to solve our situation, that’s all we are concerned about.”