Jurgen Klopp feels Liverpool have closed the gap which once separated them from Manchester City, with it now a 50-50 fight between two Premier League title hopefuls.
The Reds finished 25 points behind Pep Guardiola’s side as the Blues captured the English top-flight crown in record-breaking style last season.
Those at Anfield have invested well to push themselves into contention this term, currently enjoying a four-point lead at the summit.
Liverpool had been hoping to move 10 clear during a trip to the Etihad Stadium on Thursday, but suffered a 2-1 defeat to see their unbeaten opening to the campaign brought to an abrupt end.
There was little to choose between the two sides on the day, though, and Klopp feels that further highlights the progress he has overseen at Anfield.
The German told reporters ahead of an FA Cup third round clash with Wolves: "From my point of view we were never on a level with Manchester City since I was in.
"We won games against them since Pep was in especially but in these games City were better.
"We scored more goals and we defended really well but the possession was probably at least 60/40 for them but we won them. Now it's 50/50."
On a frustrating evening in Manchester which saw Sergio Aguero and Leroy Sane net either side of a leveller from Roberto Firmino, Klopp added: “We had ups, they had ups. We had chances, they had chances.
“If you look at the stats it is more equal between us and City now. Away at City is one of the most difficult football matches you can play.
“Nobody would be surprised if it was a draw and we could have won. But it’s all over - we’ve played them twice now and let’s play the rest of the season.”
Liverpool remain the side to catch in the Premier League and have shown that they have the stomach for a fight.
Nobody within their camp is reading too much into one result, with the collective focus on the red half of Merseyside having already turned to the future rather than dwelling on the past.