Van Dijk's verdict on penalty and City stalemate

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He is always up there scoring the most goals in the Premier League.

With they way the match has ended, it's a question that will remain unanswered. And while Guardiola, diplomatically, name checked the division's other leading sides, he did concede that he expected Jurgen Klopp's team to be prime contenders in this season. Was this, though, really a surprise?

This was a meeting between two unbeaten sides in the early phases of a season where it is already clear that margins for error will be small.

The three completed matches of the 8th round of the championship of England football.

Liverpool's boss was happy with the way his team played after a gruelling run of games which saw them play PSG, Chelsea twice, Napoli and Man City in the space of just over two weeks. It led to Anfield being shrouded in a cloak of caution.

He called City's all-time record goalscorer a "complete nightmare" to play against and said he'd much rather defend against Salah, as good as he is. In 2018, Aguero has scored 14 league goals, but only one - in the recent 5-0 win at Cardiff - has come away from the Etihad.

"I think apart from the penalty moment it was a great game to play in and we were unlucky that we didn't score, but it was a tough game against the champions. Both teams did well".

Klopp said: 'Now the players go off and play the Nations League which is the most senseless competition in the world.

Liverpool's Sadio Mane seems to love playing against Manchester City.

They were the top two teams in the Premier League heading into this clash and the feeling of respect was palpable during the entire 90 minutes on Sunday at Anfield.

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Everyone was expecting goals when Liverpool and Manchester City met on Sunday afternoon. They also dropped deeper as a back four to deny Liverpool's front three the space to get in behind them and it worked a treat. "We control it through Riyad, Bernardo, the guys to give the extra pass". They are maybe, no, they are the best team in the world in these transitions, offensive, defensive, there is no team better in the world than that.

"They are incredibly quick and we controlled them".

Guardiola did not want his side to be undone by the bloodying red attacking blurs that have come to define and decide these fixtures and admitted he meant to oversee a match of attrition rather than attacking splendour.

Benjamin Mendy could also return to fill a void at left-back after six games out with a foot injury while Fabian Delph is still sidelined.

In many ways it was an uncharacteristic City performance but a controlled one which satisfied Guardiola. It will never be 0-0, they said.

Mahrez, speaking for the first time about the penalty incident, said: 'My record is good in the Champions League yes, but not in the Premier League. For Salah, it was the first one so we will see in seven or eight years.

It may not have been the free-flowing City that has carried it all before it - but it was a more nuanced tactical approach created to avoid the carnage of last season at Anfield and nearly resulted in a crucial victory.

The Merseyside outfit came from behind to rescue a 1-1 draw with Chelsea FC at Stamford Bridge last weekend after former Manchester City striker Sturridge netted a late equaliser.

Reflecting on the match as a whole, Van Dijk continued: "Their defence did well". He touched Sane more than the ball, so it's a penalty. Liverpool was never able to build up the sort of momentum it had for spells all three of the games it won against City last season.