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Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 20 June 2018

Klopp urges Liverpool to 'make our own history' ahead of Uefa Champions League quarter-final against Manchester City

Five-time European Cup winners have not featured in the semi-finals of the tournament for 10 years

Jurgen Klopp addresses the media ahead of Liverpool's Uefa Champion League quarter-final first leg against Manchester City. Richard Sellers / PA
Jurgen Klopp addresses the media ahead of Liverpool's Uefa Champion League quarter-final first leg against Manchester City. Richard Sellers / PA

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has said he and his players "have to write our own history" ahead of the Uefa Champions League quarter-final first leg against Manchester City on Wednesday.

City sit atop the Premier League table with an 16 point lead over nearest challengers Manchester United, 18 points clear of third-placed Liverpool. As such, Pep Guardiola's team enter the Champions League last eight encounter as favourites to reach the semi-finals.

However, Liverpool are the only team to inflict defeat on City in the league this season, while the Anfield side have far greater pedigree in Europe's premier club competition having won the competition five times. But with the most recent appearance in the Champions League semi-finals taking place a decade ago, Klopp wants modern day memories created at Anfield.

"This club is already so full of history and we have to write our own history," the German said. "People meet me in the street and they can tell me each goal Liverpool who scored 37 years ago in the 56th minute ... we need to be proud of our history but we need to create our own history.

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"I did that a lot in the past with my former teams, but at one point you need to do your own things. The boys are ready, they are really looking forward to it."

City can wrap up the title earlier than any team has before if they beat local rivals United on Saturday, with their march to the finish line drawing comparisons with the all-time great Premier League sides.

However, City's only league defeat of the season came at Anfield in a thrilling 4-3 Liverpool win in January and Klopp welcomed the challenge.

"I like the difficult jobs, that is the most interesting thing for a manager," he said. "What to do in this or that moment? How to prepare your boys as good as possible from the mental and physical side?"

Guardiola has won all seven of his previous Champions League quarter-finals as a manager at Barcelona and Bayern Munich.

However, no opposing coach has beaten Guardiola more in his trophy-laden career than Klopp. In 12 previous meetings, Klopp has six wins to Guardiola's five.

The Liverpool manager played down the significance of that personal record, but did cite it as reason to believe that beating what he described as possibly the best side in Europe at the moment is feasible.

"I didn't beat Pep, my teams did and I was lucky with them doing what they did," Klopp said. "It's really difficult, but I think we can beat the best. But only if we work really hard and smart."

Klopp confirmed centre-back Joel Matip will miss the rest of the season with a thigh injury, while Adam Lallana will miss both legs against City due to a hamstring injury suffered in Saturday's 2-1 win at Crystal Palace.

German midfielder Emre Can missed that match and remains a doubt with a back injury.