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'Liverpool don't want to get burned again' - Crouch sees title tussle with Man City being 50-50

2:27 am AEDT 3/3/19
Andrew Robertson Virgil van Dijk Liverpool 2018-19
The ex-Reds striker believes Jurgen Klopp's side have the more favourable run-in to the season, but says they will not be getting ahead of themselves

Liverpool do not want to “get burned again” in a Premier League title race, says Peter Crouch, with it important that those at Anfield do not get too far ahead of themselves.

With it 29 years since the Reds last tasted top-flight glory, each passing season brings with it added pressure and expectation.

Jurgen Klopp is the man being charged with the task of ending that barren run.

He has his side in the mix at present, but defending champions Manchester City are refusing to surrender their crown without a fight.

Former Reds striker Crouch hopes focus can be sustained at Anfield, telling the Daily Mail: “It's one of the biggest regrets of my career that the Liverpool team I played in never made a proper title challenge.

“The three years I spent at Anfield were brilliant and I can imagine what it would have been like had we been in with a chance. The city — well, half of it — would have been insane.

“When I left, the title drought had been 18 years. The fact it is now 29 has only heightened emotions. The prize they want most might be shimmering in the distance but nobody will get carried away; nobody wants to get burned again.”

Liverpool’s title credentials are set to face another stern test on Sunday when they take in a Merseyside derby date with neighbours Everton.

Crouch believes collecting a morale-boosting victory in that contest could provide a springboard for the Reds, with their run-in more comfortable on paper than that set to be taken in by City.

The ex-England international added: “With 10 games to go, I have to be honest — regardless of my affinities — and say it is still 50-50.

Manchester City are fabulous and they will exploit the slightest slip-up. They will watch Sunday's Merseyside derby and see the potential for Liverpool to take a false step.

“If Liverpool manage to win the fight, they will have cleared the biggest hurdle remaining in their way. I've studied the run-ins of both clubs and Liverpool's looks more favourable than City's, especially when you get to the middle of April.

“To set themselves up for that, though, they need to take care of the Merseyside derby. Win this battle and they really can start to believe.”