Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has hailed Pep Guardiola for taking on a difficult job at Manchester City rather than settling for an easier option in another division.
Guardiola and Klopp are set to clash in what is expected to be a fascinating fixture on Saturday as Liverpool and City look to maintain ground with Chelsea at the top of the table.
The City manager is arguably in his toughest management position so far with Guardiola previously coaching Barcelona and Bayern Munich, with some fans questioning whether he could achieve success in a more competitive division.
English football has proven a much more difficult beast for Guardiola to try and conquer with City showing inconsistency after a brilliant start to the season.
But Klopp believes his former Bundesliga rival deserves credit for opting to take the City job in a tough division when he could have had his pick of roles in much easier leagues.
Klopp said, according to the Independent: “He came here with open eyes. He could have had easier jobs in easier leagues, that is for sure.
“He could have gone everywhere. He wanted to come here. He was probably aware 100 per cent of the big challenge.
“He knew he had a wonderful squad at Barcelona and a wonderful squad at Bayern but he had a big influence on the way they played football.
‘If you go to Barcelona as a new manager they will tell you: ‘By the way, don’t forget, we play like Pep Guardiola played.’ That’s the biggest influence you can have.
“Bayern loved the years he was there. He is a fantastic manager. Why did he come here? Maybe you should ask him.”