Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp says he was calm as he watched Manchester City take a potentially decisive step in the title race, insisting his side will have more opportunities to win the Premier League if the trophy eludes them this season.
Klopp said he was not surprised to see City triumph in the Manchester derby – their game in hand – and move a point ahead with three matches left to play.
The German is confident that even if they do not end their 29-year wait for a championship this season, he has assembled a squad capable of challenging consistently over the coming years.
For that reason he told fans not to expect “the biggest transfer window” in the club’s history this summer and has already struck Napoli’s Lorenzo Insigne off the list of reported targets.
“I watched it and I was completely calm,” said Klopp about the Manchester derby.
“It was the result I expected. United tried whatever they can, in the first half especially, but over 95 minutes it was clear they can’t stand up to City at the moment. I was not surprised by the result.
“Finally this game was played. For months there was always one game in hand. Now it’s clear, we are one point behind City and if we win our next two games, then it will be decided on the last game. That’s pretty special.
“It’s like Highlander (the 1986 movie starring Sean Connery and Christopher Lambert), only one of us will be there at the end.
“We don’t only play to be champions. Yes it’s a main target and this team is pretty close in the moment. We still have a chance and we will see what happens.
“But this will be the first time, not the last time. Just because the club is waiting a long time, that doesn’t make it any more likely.
“That we are close is already rather surprising because last year we were 25 points behind. That’s really good.
“We have to carry on and we will carry on, but only one team can be champion. I knew that before we started.
“We want to play the best football we can play every single day. That’s all we are interested in.”
Liverpool have spent heavily in recent years to get them into the position they are now in, spending the best part of £300million to bring in Virgil Van Dijk, Naby Keita, Fabinho, Alisson Becker, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Andrew Robertson and Xherdan Shaqiri.
Klopp said there was unlikely to be another spending spree this year.
“It’s always more difficult, the better your team gets,” he added ahead of Friday night’ visit of Huddersfield.
“Transfers are not there to excite the people with a new player, the job is to improve the team and there are different ways.
“Training is the best way to do it, but if you have to sign someone then you sign them.
“The team is pretty well balanced. Our plans are not for the public, but will it be the biggest transfer window of Liverpool? No, probably not.
“But I think you would have been surprised if I said ‘Yes, we will sell them all if they don’t do it (win the title)’.
“Our eyes are always open, we always look, but nothing to say in the moment.”
Klopp shot down the latest reports linking him with Insigne, however.
“We will not sign Lorenzo Insigne. He’s a very good player, but he has a long-term contract at Napoli and we will not even try it,” he said.