Barcelona forward Antoine Griezmann has no interest in leaving the LaLiga giants.

Speculation over the France international's future has increased amid his, and Barca's, struggles.

But the 29-year-old seemingly wants more than one season at Barcelona.

 

TOP STORY – GRIEZMANN NOT INTERESTED IN BARCELONA EXIT

Griezmann has no interest in leaving Barcelona, according to Le Parisien.

Since arriving from Atletico Madrid for €120million, Griezmann has managed just 14 goals in 43 games this season.

Griezmann was introduced as a 90th-minute substitute in Barca's 2-2 draw with his former club on Tuesday.

ROUND-UP

- Staying at Camp Nou and Quique Setien's future as Barcelona head coach remains a talking point after one win in four games. AS reports Setien is not in immediate danger but is far from safe, while Sport says his future is uncertain, although the club are hoping to keep him at the helm until the end of the season.

- Manchester City look set for a rebuild in the close season. The Guardian claims Bayern Munich defender David Alaba, who is out of contract next year, is a target for the Premier League giants.

- After making a stellar start to the season with Lyon before suffering a serious knee injury, Memphis Depay has been linked with a move. Le 10 Sport reports Arsenal want the attacker, who has 14 goals in 18 games this season.

- Carlos Tevez's future remains uncertain. Ole says the former Manchester United and Manchester City forward, 36, could retire as he struggles to agree to a new contract with Boca Juniors.

- With Bruno Lage on his way out as Benfica coach, the Portuguese giants are searching for a new boss. According to A Bola, Benfica have looked at the likes of Mauricio Pochettino, Ernesto Valverde and Laurent Blanc, but are now considering former Paris Saint-Germain and Arsenal coach Unai Emery.

- Tottenham defender Serge Aurier could be set for a move. Sky Sports reports Monaco are interested in the Ivory Coast right-back.

Premier League champions Liverpool will emerge at the Etihad Stadium on Thursday to a guard of honour from previous title-holders Manchester City.

It will be the latest episode in the captivating rivalry between Pep Guardiola and Jurgen Klopp.

We run the rule over two men whose tactical approaches and high levels of achievement have – and it does not feel too grandiose to suggest this – changed football in the 21st century, as well as one another.

THE BUNDESLIGA YEARS

Guardiola's arrival to take the reins of a treble-winning Bayern for 2013-14 came shortly after their rivalry with Klopp's Dortmund reached its peak.

Arjen Robben's 89th-minute winner saw Bayern down BVB 2-1 in the 2013 Champions League final at Wembley – a game played out against a backdrop of Dortmund's star playmaker Mario Gotze agreeing terms to move to Bavaria.

In hindsight, Klopp's gegenpressing machine – winners of back-to-back Bundesliga crowns in 2010-11 and 2011-12 – were coming off the top of their curve, having finished 25 points behind a relentless Bayern domestically that season.

The decline continued over the next two seasons. Dortmund were remarkably in relegation trouble halfway through 2014-15, before a post-Christmas recovery preceded Klopp's emotional farewell.

Nevertheless, there was still time for telling blows to be landed. Guardiola's first competitive game in charge saw Bayern beaten 4-2 in the 2013 DFL-Supercup at a delirious Signal Iduna Park.

Stung by that loss, Guardiola sprung a notable surprise in the first league encounter between the sides that November, where he broke Dortmund's rabid press by playing Javi Martinez as an attacking midfielder and repeatedly targeting the rangy Spain international with long balls.

The high priest of tiki-taka (a label Guardiola famously loathes) had presided over "more long balls than in the last three years combined" from a Bayern team, according to Klopp, who bristled after Arjen Robben and Thomas Muller added to Gotze's inevitable second-half opener in a 3-0 win.

A depleted Munich were similarly reactive when they won the DFB-Pokal final 2-0 in extra-time, even if flooding midfield numbers was a more recognisably Guardiola tactic.

Diverting from his dizzying 4-3-3 of swirling triangles has remained something the Catalan tactician has frequently done across his meetings with Klopp, and not always with the success he enjoyed in Germany.

HOLLOW VICTORIES AND THE PHONEY WAR

Klopp ended his homeland head-to-head against Guardiola with three victories, making it back-to-back Supercup triumphs in 2014, having claimed a 3-0 Bundesliga result at Allianz Arena earlier that year – the authority of which was dimmed by the fact Bayern had already cantered to the title.

Guardiola had four victories to his name, with one draw ultimately falling in Dortmund's favour as Bayern failed with all four of their penalty attempts in a 2015 DFB-Pokal semi-final shoot-out.

However, Klopp was denied a glorious farewell as his team lost in the final to Wolfsburg and the fact Robert Lewandowski had followed Gotze to Munich by this point underlined a deck stacked against him.

Liverpool came calling for Klopp in October 2015 and he helmed helter-skelter runs to the EFL Cup and Europa League finals. Manchester City and Sevilla prevailed respectively.

That was Manuel Pellegrini's final honour as City boss as he made way for Guardiola, who collected a third successive Bundesliga title in 2015-16. Thomas Tuchel's Dortmund finished closer in terms of position and points (second, 10 behind) than Klopp's version had managed when in direct competition.

With the stage presumably set for renewed hostilities between Guardiola and incoming Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho, the similarly newly installed Antonio Conte did not read the script as Chelsea romped to 2016-17 Premier League glory.

Klopp got the better of his head-to-heads with City as a Georginio Wijnaldum goal sealed a 1-0 New Year's Eve win at Anfield before Sergio Aguero rescued a point for the hosts in the return game.

Guardiola laid it on thick after that 1-1 draw, declaring it to be "one of the most special days of my life".

"He is Spanish. They are a little bit more emotional than the Germans," Klopp chuckled in response.

TON-UP BUT NOT INVINCIBLE AND THE ROAD TO KIEV

Liverpool beat City three times in 2017-18, when most other teams could barely lay a glove on Guardiola's record-breaking side.

But the game where City prevailed, an unusual 5-0 thrashing at the Etihad Stadium where Liverpool subsided meekly after Sadio Mane's red card for clattering Ederson with a high boot, arguably had the biggest influence on the campaign.

When that game was 11 v 11, Guardiola's back three was horribly exposed. Aguero's opener arrived against the run of play, with an unusually wasteful Mohamed Salah having tormented Nicolas Otamendi.

City never used 3-5-2 in the league again that season, reverting to a swashbuckling 4-3-3 that churned out 19 consecutive wins and made the second half of the schedule a virtual procession.

Liverpool halted their designs on invincibility however, claiming a raucous 4-3 Anfield win in January. Klopp hailed "pressing from another planet" by his front three as Roberto Firmino, Mane and Salah were all on target in a euphoric nine-minute spell after half-time.

Guardiola had again seen a swift avalanche of goals bring the roof in during a big match and his tweak to a 4-4-2 diamond, eyeing avenues around those Liverpool pressing lanes, backfired in that season's Champions League quarter-final.

A 3-0 first-leg loss at Anfield, with all the goals arriving during the first half, left City with a mountain to climb and a death-or-glory approach in the return fixture – deploying a formation probably best described as 3-CHARGE!!! – eventually ran out of steam in a 2-1 loss.

But it was Liverpool who came up short in the Kiev final on Loris Karius' nightmare outing against Real Madrid, while City sauntered to a 100-point haul as dominant Premier League champions. Sitting 25 points back in fourth, the Reds had a considerable gap to bridge.

CHASING PERFECTION

Despite that deficit, their efforts in going blow-for-blow with City over 90-minute periods left the impression Liverpool were the best placed of the pretenders to overthrow the champions.

Both teams reconvened on Merseyside undefeated in October 2018 and remained that way as the free-flowing nature of recent meetings gave way to a cagey 0-0 draw.

Reprising the theme of those early Klassiker meetings, Guardiola took his foot off the throttle as City played at a controlled tempo – an approach that would have ended the club's Anfield hoodoo but for Riyad Mahrez's ballooned late penalty.

Fire and brimstone returned the following January, though, with a wobbling City recovering their poise and avoiding a 10-point deficit at the top. Aguero and Leroy Sane were on target either side of Firmino in a bravura display, where Aymeric Laporte took on the unfamiliar role of left-back to stifle Salah.

That was Liverpool's only loss of the season as they finished on 97 points, agonisingly one shy of City. However, their subsequent Champions League final win over Tottenham improbably propelled them further along.

Just as Guardiola has tempered some of his more cavalier tendencies when faced with Klopp, the challenge of an unrelenting City also forced the Liverpool boss into subtle and decisive tweaks.

In bringing in Alisson and Virgil van Dijk, he spent big for what many see as the finest goalkeeper and centre-back on the planet. Their very presence means risk can be reduced.

Heavy metal football has given way to a steady pulsing beat that never wavers. In the city of Merseybeat, Klopp has gone electro.

Amid their steamrollering of the opposition this season, Liverpool have 19 wins by a solitary goal in all competitions. They are frighteningly and ruthlessly clinical. A profligate City trail in their wake, although Guardiola has used this relative freedom from pressure to thumb intriguingly through his tactical playbook in 2020.

Both men have inspired the other to reach beyond their comfort zones and the result is the two best teams in world football. With Klopp contracted to Liverpool until 2024 and Guardiola talking up an extended stay, the thought occurs that they are each other's motivation for sticking around. There is nowhere better to measure their greatness than against one another.

Frank Lampard insisted Chelsea have a lot of hard work ahead to reach the level of Premier League champions Liverpool and Manchester City following their shock loss at lowly West Ham.

Chelsea suffered a surprise 3-2 defeat to West Ham, who moved three points clear of the relegation zone thanks to Andriy Yarmolenko's 89th-minute winner at the London Stadium.

Willian's brace was not enough for Chelsea to secure at least a point away from home – the result ending the club's six-game unbeaten streak in all competitions.

Chelsea remain fourth in the table, just two points clear of in-form Manchester United and Wolves with six matches remaining in the race for Champions League qualification.

Asked if he was concerned that Chelsea had a mental issue following their inconsistent form in 2019-20, head coach Lampard told reporters: "It's something that has happened a few times this season.

"We've had opportunities to close gaps and jump over teams because of other results or whatever situation.

"But we haven't done it and that's a sign of where we are. We know we have a lot of hard work to do to get where we want to be and the reason the rest of us are chasing Liverpool and Man City is because of the consistency that develops over time. That's what we have to work towards.

"It's obviously frustrating but if we're in that position it's how you bounce back, how you move forward. We have Watford now at the weekend and games after that to try and carry on.

"We have to realise the position we are in in terms of fighting for the Champions League places and move forward."

While Chelsea – who will welcome relegation-threatened Watford to Stamford Bridge on Saturday – lost their 10th game of the campaign, Christian Pulisic was a shining light against West Ham midweek.

Pulisic earned the 42nd-minute penalty which Willian converted before winning the free-kick that was also put away by his Brazilian team-mate with 18 minutes remaining.

"A big positive," Lampard said. "He's playing really well, as we can all see. Him and Willian as well. Willian gets his two goals. But with Christian I think it's more like earlier in the season when he had a patch in the run up to Christmas where he was playing towards his level.

"Then he got injured and has been out for a long time. It's nice to see him back, fresh and hungry, and playing with the quality he has. He's a young player with great talent."

Jurgen Klopp hopes Liverpool can be inspired by the All Blacks and not settle for just one Premier League title.

Liverpool have won their first league trophy since 1990 after a dominant Premier League campaign, adding to last season's Champions League success.

Ahead of visiting Manchester City on Thursday, Klopp said he wanted Liverpool to continue pushing – inspired by New Zealand's national rugby union side the All Blacks.

"We feel in the middle of something, not the end of something," Klopp told reporters.

"We have to give everything until we finish our careers. As long as you wear this shirt, less than 100 per cent is not allowed. That is not my phrase, it came from the All Blacks. I saw that in a nice documentary about the All Blacks and I kept that always for myself. That is for each LFC player the same and for me the same.

"We prepare for Man City with full focus. We will be prepared for the next season as well. I don't know another way. I've learned when you think you've reached the pinnacle you are already on the way down and we don't feel that.

"I don't feel finally satisfied. It's a big step but not the only thing I want to talk about with the boys in 20 years."

With seven games remaining, Liverpool are 23 points clear of City ahead of their meeting at the Etihad Stadium.

But Klopp played down any talk either side could make a statement by winning the encounter, saying next season shaped as being different.

"A statement is a statement, I don't think we have to make them, what would change for next year if we beat City and what would happen to us if they won?" he said.

"People will say a few things. If we win they will say it's the best team in the league and if they win they will say, whatever City is better but we won the league, whatever people will say it's really not so important for next season for sure not.

"We both have to be ready for next year, not that I would be too worried about City, but we all have to be ready. You can really see at the moment that United is coming up, they're very much the same team a few weeks ago, besides one or two players, and people thought they had no chance, and now we see how good they are and how good they could be and they will not be worse next year, for sure, and again Chelsea as well."

Ilkay Gundogan has no issues with giving Premier League champions Liverpool a guard of honour as he acknowledges Manchester City must accept the Reds have been the better side.

A week after City's 2-1 loss to Chelsea confirmed Liverpool as champions, Jurgen Klopp's side head to the Etihad Stadium to face the side 23 points beneath them in the table.

As it is their first game since they sealed the title, Liverpool will be afforded a guard of honour by their next opponents, a tradition Guardiola has already said his team intend to observe.

Gundogan, who was part of the City side that won back-to-back titles prior to this season, has no qualms with standing in line and applauding the players of a rival due to their dominance across the campaign. 

"I am not sure if I have done it before to be honest," the Germany international said.

"It is a tradition in England so obviously we will follow tradition. They deserve it because they are the champions.

"I can imagine that people from the outside such as media and fans make it bigger than it actually is. A lot of people also think that we are enemies but I think we are just rivals. Rivals who play to win.

"That's what they do and that is what we do. If someone is better than you, whether that is in a game or competition, you have to accept it and congratulate them.

"Next time, when you get the chance, you have to take the chance and make it better. That is how I see it."

City will bid to dethrone Liverpool next season without midfielder David Silva as he is leaving the club after 10 years.

His exit is expected to provide more opportunities for 20-year-old midfielder Phil Foden, who has only started four Premier League games this season but has impressed in appearances off the bench and in training, with Gundogan convinced he can be Silva's heir.

"His numbers are getting better and also his influence on our game is improving," Gundogan added.

"I think he is on the right way, and with David leaving, it is more important for us to have someone to step into that role. Maybe not directly, but with time.

"He definitely has the potential and we are here to help him, to give him the support he needs, and I think he can show the best Phil Foden that he can be."

Ilkay Gundogan believes the success of Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola and Liverpool counterpart Jurgen Klopp is down to their personalities.

The Germany midfielder was Guardiola's first signing in June 2016 when he joined City from Borussia Dortmund.

It was at Dortmund that Gundogan made his name and became a key player under Klopp, helping the club to a Bundesliga and DFB-Pokal double in the 2011-12 season.

With experience of playing under both managers the 29-year-old reckons they are both men with a great deal of character.

When asked what made the pair so special, Gundogan said: "That is a question that everybody asks me to be honest! Both are amazing managers, there is no doubt about that.

"If you are a great manager you have to have a great personality. This is something they definitely have in common.

"When it comes to the game they both focus on different things. Pep is maybe more about positions, dominating the ball while Jurgen is maybe more like winning the ball and trying to score goals as quick as possible with high intensity. 

"I just think they are great human beings and the football world should be grateful that we have these two personalities."

City's defeat to Chelsea last week saw Liverpool secure the Premier League title with seven games remaining, taking the trophy off Guardiola's side.

The two sides meet at the Etihad Stadium on Thursday with City's players poised to give Liverpool a guard of honour before kick-off.

Gundogan acknowledged Klopp has played a pivotal role in Liverpool ending their 30-year wait for the league, and is thankful he has benefited from his compatriot's coaching skills as well as Guardiola's.

"I feel privileged to have worked with Jurgen but also to be with Pep now," added Gundogan.

"It was such an amazing time with Klopp at Dortmund and such a successful time as well, I learnt so much from him. 

"It is still also such a great time here at Manchester City with Pep. I appreciate every training session, every moment that I can enjoy the game. 

"I am grateful and thankful for both, because they taught me so much. I don’t think there is any player who has had the opportunity to work with both so I feel lucky."

Ilkay Gundogan has sent a warning to Liverpool that Manchester City will be highly motivated by the pain of losing their Premier League title.

City's defeat to Chelsea last week saw the Reds wrap up the league with seven games to spare, taking the trophy away from Pep Guardiola's side after back-to-back triumphs.

The two sides meet at the Etihad Stadium on Thursday and Gundogan, who conceded Jurgen Klopp's men were worthy champions, said City already knew where they had let themselves down.

And he hopes to start to heal the wounds in this campaign, which still harbours the prospect of further success in the FA Cup and the Champions League, having already delivered the EFL Cup.

"Liverpool had a great season so congratulations to them on winning the league," said the German, who played under Klopp at Borussia Dortmund.

"They deserved it, there is no doubt about that, and we are going to try and make it better again next season.

"We know what we have done wrong, we know our mistakes and where we have dropped points unnecessarily so it is up to us to make it better next season.

"There is still a lot to play for this season, we have still got a few Premier League games left and then we have the FA Cup semi-final, the Champions League, so it can still be a great season and that is what we want to achieve."

On the prospect of using this season's disappointment as fuel for the next campaign, the midfielder added: "If you don't go through difficult times, you don't know the worth of winning.

"I think you have to experience both sides of it. Of course, in sports, losing is part of the game. You will have that sooner or later; you can't always win.

"One day you win, the other day you lose. It is important to appreciate everything and always try to make it better."

Gundogan felt City had slipped up in games where they had no excuses and that fact, allied to Liverpool's relentlessness, had made the destination of the title a foregone conclusion for some time.

"I think there are two things we have to pay attention to," he explained. "One thing is that Liverpool had a great season, they hardly dropped points so it is so tough to maintain that level for such a long time.

"On the other side, we have to stop dropping points unnecessarily. Games that we have to win, we didn't.

"I remember a game at Newcastle where we conceded a goal in the last minute and dropped two points there. We played a game at home to Wolves and lost the game.

"There are so many games where we made mistakes and were just unable to win these types of games.

"Still, we are second, it is not a bad season I would say. We know where we have to improve next season and if we are able to do that again we will be in the title race."

Pep Guardiola is not looking to bring Jadon Sancho back to Manchester City as Leroy Sane's replacement as the manager plans for a rebuild he insists is "a normal situation".

Stats Perform News understands Sane is set to sign for Bayern Munich after an initial €49million (£44.5m) deal - potentially rising to €60m (£54.5m) - was agreed between the clubs.

Sane has missed much of the season due to injury but had previously been linked to Bayern and has now played his last match for City.

Yet if City are to recruit a winger in the Germany international's place, Sancho – who has been linked with a Borussia Dortmund exit – does not appear a viable candidate.

Sancho left City for Dortmund in 2017 in pursuit of first-team football, soon establishing himself in the Bundesliga.

The England star has been linked with Manchester United, among a host of other elite clubs, but Guardiola does not foresee a return to City.

"No, he decided to leave," Guardiola said of Sancho. "Why should he decide to come back?

"We wanted him to stay - like Eric [Garcia] and Phil [Foden], like Leroy now. So when he decided to move to Dortmund, it's not because he's going to decide to come back a year later.

"He didn't want to be here, so I don't think he wants to come back here."

He added: "Players are being considered important by the club but they decide to leave.

"They don't want to be here, which is the case of Jadon Sancho and especially Leroy - Sancho was in the academy, but especially Leroy.

"I said many times: if a player doesn't want to stay, they have to leave, because we are not getting the best out of a player in his mind if they are not happy here."

Guardiola acknowledges City have work to do in the transfer market, though, saying: "It's part of another process.

"We would like to stay with the players who give this club what they gave us for the last decade. We grow and sometimes we have to replace them, and we are going to do it and replace with new players.

"In some [positions, City need to rebuild] - not for a lack of quality, but for the absences of Vinny [Vincent Kompany] and now David [Silva, out of contract at the end of the season].

"With Fernandinho and [Sergio] Aguero, next season's the last year of their contracts and we don't know if they're going to extend or not, so partly yes, some players we have to rebuild a little.

"But it's not like a disaster or a bad thing, it's part of the age, it's a normal situation and circumstances. It happens in all the clubs."

Pep Guardiola recognises Manchester City "can't win all the time", but he is keen to take on his latest challenge and catch Liverpool next season.

After coming a close second to City last term, Liverpool have won the Premier League title for the first time in 2019-20, ending a 30-year wait for a 19th top-flight championship.

The Reds have done it in dominant fashion, too, with a 23-point gap between the new and former champions ahead of Thursday's clash at the Etihad Stadium.

Guardiola accepts Liverpool deserve their success, yet he will bid to respond next season after first using their midweek match as preparation for key FA Cup and Champions League fixtures.

"I had many challenges in my career, this is one more," Guardiola told reporters.

"Other people say I'm a big failure because I didn't win the Champions League here and with Bayern Munich, but the challenge is to work to compete like in the past - even if we didn't get the results we expected as a team for any circumstances we cannot control.

"We know the quality [Liverpool] have. It will be good for our game against Arsenal, Real Madrid; how is our position, our level in terms of playing key moments in tough competitions against good teams?

"We have to prepare for next season. Of course, we lost the Premier League with seven games left and more than 20 points, and the challenge was to win the league this season again.

"It didn't happen because we weren't as consistent as previous seasons. It was incredible consistency.

"But you look at what Liverpool have done and it's almost impossible. All you can do is accept it. You can't win all the time, do well all the time.

"I think for the football and society, it's good – they deserve it. We try to learn from our mistakes, like from what we have done with consistency in the past, and try to apply it next season.

"That's not to assure you that what we have done this season is to happen better next season or worse - the same as when we won the two Premier Leagues in a row.

"Every game, every time, it is to prove again who we are, so to live for the past is ridiculous.

"You may say I don't have to show anything. Yeah, you have to show it again and again to be part of big clubs or this business. Everyone has to do their best."

Jurgen Klopp vowed Liverpool will go on the "attack" when they look to defend their Premier League title next season. 

The Reds celebrated ending a 30-year wait to be crowned champions of England last week when second-placed Manchester City were beaten at Chelsea. 

Liverpool have won their first Premier League title with ease, leading City by 23 points with seven games to spare ahead of their encounter at the Etihad Stadium on Thursday. 

Klopp says the Merseyside club are determined to finish in style as he wants his players to be hungry to retain their crown in 2020-21. 

"As long as we stay humble and greedy, we have a good chance to remain a really uncomfortable opponent," the Liverpool boss said on Wednesday. 

"When you are a really uncomfortable opponent, you have a chance to win. And when you have a chance to win, then sometimes you have to win. 

"There are a lot of challenges, life is constantly a challenge, and our challenge is now being champions and playing seven games against teams that will fight for everything. 

"We can show that we don't run because we have to, we run because we want to. 

"Next season, you can write stories about us being the defending champions or whatever, but that is why I say - we will not defend anything, we will attack it." 

Klopp expects Liverpool to face strong competition next year – and not just from Pep Guardiola's City squad.

He added: "City will be strong next season, Manchester United will be strong next season, Chelsea will be strong next season. 

"We have to play 38 games during the year. What we achieved last week is something for the history books." 

Pep Guardiola wished Leroy Sane all the best at "fantastic" Bayern Munich as he confirmed the Germany winger's return to the Bundesliga is almost done.

Stats Perform News understands a fee was agreed between the clubs on Tuesday, with the Germany international to cost an initial €49million (£44.5m), rising to €60m (£54.5m) and he is expected in Munich on Wednesday.

It brings a four-year stay in the Premier League to an end and will leave a overriding sense of what might have been – the 24-year-old missed virtually all of 2019-20 due to a serious knee injury.

Prior to that he had shown immense abilities in back-to-back Premier League title triumphs for City, winning the Professional Footballers' Association's (PFA) Young Player of the Year award in 2017-18.

But Bayern had emerged as suitors last year before his knee injury and, with his City contract set to expire next year, the Bundesliga champions have managed to secured a cut-price deal.

While the move is not yet complete, Guardiola confirmed it is close and he wished the former Schalke talent well.

"It looks like it," Guardiola said of Sane joining Bayern in Wednesday's news conference ahead of facing Liverpool on Thursday.

"It's not already done, there are still some little issues, but it looks like he'll go to Munich. I wish him all the best.

"I give him big thanks for these years together and I wish him all the best in a fantastic club.

"He wants to leave - everyone has their own life. I would have loved him to stay here, but he decided to leave, he thinks he'll be better and happier, so I've nothing to say."

Sane's absence has been seen viewed as a reason for City's inability to challenge Liverpool for the Premier League title this season, with the Reds wrapping it up with a 23-point cushion last week.

Guardiola admits Liverpool have simply been the better team, but he vowed to ensure the Reds "feel" 2020-21, as he plots to overthrow Jurgen Klopp's men.

"First of all, there was a team that was better, they played at an outstanding level in every game and you have to do more," he said.

"The supporters help you understand, it's an incredible part of our education to accept another is better, then you have to try to reduce this gap. From the last game to the future seven eight, nine games left through to next season, we must work harder and do better.

"We are going to make Liverpool feel next season, and other opponents will try to fight for the next chapters in the Premier League as well."

Jurgen Klopp says it will not be necessary for Manchester City to give Liverpool a guard of honour ahead of their Premier League clash on Thursday.

Pep Guardiola stated that City will line up to welcome the newly-crowned champions onto the pitch at the Etihad Stadium for their first match since winning the title last week.

Liverpool celebrated being champions of England for the first time in 30 years when City were beaten at Chelsea last Thursday.

Klopp does not feel the need for Guardiola's men to make such a gesture to the side that has dethroned them, but thinks it is a nice touch.

The Reds boss said during a virtual press conference on Wednesday: "I am not sure if I've ever had one [a guard of honour], long ago in Germany maybe.

"An English tradition and it is a nice gesture. I wouldn't need it as we want to play football and don't celebrate but again it's nice. That is it."

Liverpool lead second-placed City by a mammoth 23 points with seven games remaining this season, but Klopp says there is no chance they will be winding down.

He added: "I saw City play three times now [since the restart]. You cannot defend City if you don't play an intense game.

"I can’t see a game where two teams are waiting for final whistle. This will be a proper football game."

Klopp revealed that he has no new injuries to contend with.  

Add Tottenham to the list of Sergej Milinkovic-Savic admirers.

The Lazio star and Serbia international has teams queuing up for his services, with Paris Saint-Germain reportedly tipped to secure his signature.

However, Premier League outfit Spurs are now eyeing Milinkovic-Savic.

 

TOP STORY – MILINKOVIC-SAVIC WANTED BY SPURS

Jose Mourinho is interested in bringing Lazio star Sergej Milinkovic-Savic to Tottenham, according to Foot Mercato.

Milinkovic-Savic is a player in demand, having been linked with the likes of Paris Saint-Germain, Real Madrid, Manchester United, Juventus, Manchester City and Chelsea.

While a move for Milinkovic-Savic appears out of reach for Spurs, Jose Mourinho is still dreaming.

 

ROUND-UP

- While Milinkovic-Savic is a dream for Spurs, The Telegraph says Tottenham are confident of signing Southampton's Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg. Mourinho, however, must raise transfer funds through sales from his squad.

Inter are in advanced talks with Brescia to finalise a deal for star Sandro Tonali, according to journalist Nicolo Schira. Inter have agreed a five-year deal with Tonali.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic's future at Milan beyond the 2019-20 season is complicated, says Calciomercato. Ibrahimovic is out of contract at the end of the campaign and the 38-year-old striker is no closer to signing an extension. While he would like to remain at San Siro, an extension looks set to be postponed until the proposed arrival of Ralf Rangnick as head coach.

- Sport Bild reports Bayern Munich are hopeful of extending David Alaba's contract, despite failing to come to an agreement at a meeting last week. Alaba has been linked to Chelsea recently. Meanwhile, Sky Sport says Bayern are not prepared to exercise their option to sign Ivan Perisic permanently from Inter following his loan spell.

- ABC says Real Betis have been in negotiations with former West Ham, Real Madrid and Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini about their coaching vacancy.

Milan and Napoli are both interested in Fiorentina defender Nikola Milenkovic, claims Le10 Sport. The Serbian could be a replacement for Napoli centre-back Kalidou Koulibaly, who has been linked to the likes of Manchester City, Liverpool and Real Madrid.

- The Daily Mail reports Arsenal are ready to use out-of-favour midfielder Matteo Guendouzi as a bargaining chip in a potential swap deal. United, PSG, Madrid and Barca have emerged as possible destinations.

Juventus director Fabio Paratici said Miralem Pjanic would only leave for Barcelona after the Bosnian midfielder agreed to join the LaLiga champions.

Pjanic will swap Juve for Barca at the end of the 2019-20 season, with Arthur moving in the opposite direction as part of the high-profile swap deal.

Juve star Pjanic was in the starting XI and played 74 minutes of Tuesday's 3-1 Serie A victory over Genoa following the announcement.

Asked about Pjanic prior to Juve's win, Paratici told Sky Sport Italia: "Logically, the transfer market is part planning and part opportunity. In this particular deal, we had both elements.

"Pjanic is a very important player for us, so when the option emerged, we spoke to Miralem and he said he was happy here, so the only club he would've left us for was Barcelona.

"We found this player Arthur, who we had been tracking for a long time, and who is younger than Pjanic."

Juve have also been involved in another swap deal, with 19-year-old Portuguese winger Felix Correia arriving from Manchester City in exchange for 18-year-old Spanish forward Pablo Moreno.

Correia has signed a five-year contract in Turin following his €10.5million (£9.5m) transfer, while Moreno – who left Barcelona for Juve in 2018 – has penned a four-year deal and cost City €10m (£9m).

"Felix is a winger who is strong in taking men on, he's very talented and we'd been following him for a while too," Paratici added. "He was more functional for our U23 team project compared to Moreno."

 

Leroy Sane's long-mooted switch from Manchester City to Bayern Munich has been agreed.

The Germany international will initially cost Bayern €49million (£44.5m), rising to €60m (£54.5m) and is expected in Munich on Wednesday, Stats Perform News understands.

Sane joined City from Schalke in 2016 in a deal reportedly worth an initial £37m (€40m) and he went on to show flashes of immense ability during his first campaign.

He elevated his game to the next level in 2017-18 and won the Professional Footballers' Association's (PFA) Young Player of the Year award as Pep Guardiola's side clinched the Premier League title.

Sane helped City to another top-flight crown the following year and scored 16 goals across all competitions, though links with Bayern became commonplace towards the end of 2018-19.

Bayern were rumoured to have been interested in bringing the winger back to the Bundesliga last year, however they were said to be unwilling to match City's asking price.

Sane then suffered a serious knee injury in the Community Shield last August and only returned to the pitch in June.

Much of his time on the sidelines coincided with strengthening reports of Sane desiring a move to Munich, and on June 19 Guardiola confirmed the 24-year-old had informed the club he would not be signing an extension to his contract.

As such, Guardiola accepted Sane was either to be sold this year or leave on a free transfer in June 2021.

City have at least avoided the latter scenario, though the reported fee of up to €60m is significantly less than the £137m (€150m) asking price they are alleged to have set in 2019.

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