Gary Neville: 'Liverpool formation caught out City'


Gary Neville has told his podcast Liverpool's 'front four' formation "caught Man City out" in their 1-1 draw at the Etihad on Sunday - and suggested "something's not the same" with Pep Guardiola's side

Man City 1-1 Liverpool, Jordan Henderson, Roberto Firmino and Mohamed Salah.

Jurgen Klopp sprang a surprise at City when he opted to start with Sadio Mane, Mohamed Salah, Diogo Jota and Roberto Firmino, and the Liverpool boss was rewarded with a vibrant attacking display before half-time.

Although the draw wasn't sufficient to propel Liverpool back to the top of the Premier League table, it means the champions head into the international break five points clear of City.

"I think in the first half, it was a demonstration of how brilliant these two teams can be, the exhibition they can put on and the Premier League can put on," said Neville on his podcast.

"The second half showed how long we've got left in this season, I think both teams went in at half-time and said 'We've got to calm this down a little bit.'

"I think with City being where they are, my feeling was they'd be quite desperate to beat Liverpool today, damage them, get close to them within two points and a game in hand. I was wrong with that because I thought City would show a lot more urgency.

"I think Pep showed the respect he has for Liverpool in the second half, in that he didn't really break away from his shape in the counter-attack.

"In that first 25 minutes it was exhilarating, the speed of play, the tempo, the passes into the front players, it was a throwback, and a little bit of throwback to the earlier Klopp days, a bit more frantic. Now it's a lot more measured, more rounded, but it caught City out. The idea of playing Jota was like a front four, there was no subtlety to it, they were going for it.

"It really was a brilliant display and wonderful to watch, and it just really caught City out, and it took half an hour for City to weather that storm, get into the game and realise what's happening here."

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