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‘Rivals will spend millions to deny Liverpool domination’ – Barnes warns Reds to expect response

8:06 AM GMT 23/12/2019
Liverpool Club World Cup 2019
The former Anfield star believes Jurgen Klopp’s side are capable of staying at the top for many years, but says competition for honours will be fierce

Liverpool are capable of competing for top honours over many years, says John Barnes, but domestic and European rivals can be expected to “spend hundreds of millions” in a bid to stop the Reds from dominating.

Jurgen Klopp’s side have become continental and global kings in 2019.

The Champions League crown was secured last season, while the current campaign has delivered UEFA Super Cup and Club World Cup triumphs.

A 10-point lead has also been opened up at the top of the Premier League table, with Liverpool looking to land a top-flight title in England for the first time in 30 years.

The Reds have become the team to catch, with the potential there for them to become regular collectors of major silverware.

The chasing pack are, however, likely to invest heavily in an effort to close the gap, with Barnes warning that bigger challenges lie ahead.

“In terms of what they have done so far, I can see them doing it again next year,” the Reds legend said in the Liverpool Echo.

“But if Man City or Man United spend lots of money to improve, can we say that Liverpool are definitely going to win the league? No.

“You have to maintain your consistency. I don’t think this Liverpool team can actually get any better but they can be as consistent.”

Barnes formed part of the last Liverpool side to savour title success, with the club having been a European superpower throughout the 1970s and 80s, but he does not expect the class of 2019-20 to have things all their own way.

He added: “Now a team can spend hundreds of millions whereas in the past that didn’t happen - it took time.

“Now a team can rapidly improve because of the spending power.

“I think it’s much harder to dominate, win the league and maintain your position at the very top than it was in my day.”

Liverpool, fresh from edging out Flamengo in the Club World Cup final in Qatar, will be back in domestic action on Boxing Day when they take in a trip to Leicester – with the Foxes still sat second in the Premier League table despite suffering a 3-1 defeat to Manchester City in their last outing.