Doha, Dec 17 (IANS) Concacaf winners Monterrey and European champions Liverpool are gearing up for a FIFA Club World Cup semi-final in Qatar. The winner of Wednesday’s match will face either Flamengo or Al Hilal in the final.
Jürgen Klopp’s Reds, currently top of the English Premier League, are favourites to win the competition. But the German coach tried to downplay that label in a press conference in Doha, reports Efe news.
“Look, it is not important if, and I am not sure about [that], we were the ‘best football team in the world’ in the summer, the last game or whatever — it is only important what we will be tomorrow night,” he said.
“Nobody cares about what happened three days ago, five days ago or six days ago. We need to show we are ready and that’s the only thing we are concerned about.”
Liverpool has been unbeaten for 34 games in the English league.
Klopp revealed that Dutch player Georginio Wijnaldum has recovered from an injury he sustained in Merseyside’s 2-0 home win against Watford at the weekend but that he would not feature at the Club World Cup.
Looking ahead to the fixture with his Mexican rivals, he said: “We are full of respect for Monterrey and looking forward to the game.”
Monterrey’s manager, Argentinian Antonio Mohamed, said his team had put in a lot of effort to reach this stage of the competition.
“We have no fear, for a start, we have a lot of respect, we know who we’re up against,” he added.