Liverpool should forget about Champions League, says Gary Neville

Reds drew 0-0 with Bayern Munich in last 16 first leg at Anfield

Virgil van Dijk and Fabinho trudge off after Liverpool's 0-0 draw at Everton
Image: Virgil van Dijk and Fabinho trudge off after Liverpool's 0-0 draw at Everton

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp should give himself a "clear run" at trying to win the Premier League by going out of Europe, according to Gary Neville.

The Reds were unable to reclaim top spot from Manchester City when they were held to a goalless draw by Everton at Goodison Park on Super Sunday, meaning for the first time since December 7, Pep Guardiola's side sit in pole position having played the same number of games.

The tense stalemate represented a fourth draw in six Premier League matches while they have failed to score in two of their last three.

Were it not for an imperious performance from Virgil van Dijk, matters might have been worse against what Klopp described as "wild" opponents.

Jurgen Klopp reacts to missed chance against Bayern Munich in the first leg
Image: Jurgen Klopp reacts to a missed chance against Bayern Munich in the first leg
LISTEN: Gary Neville Podcast

LISTEN: Gary Neville Podcast

Martin Tyler is joined by Gary Neville to reflect on Liverpool's 0-0 draw with Everton as Manchester City edged ahead in the title race.

Liverpool now sit one point off City in second place with nine games remaining, and they face Bayern Munich in the second leg of their Champions League last 16 tie in-between their next two Premier League games against Burnley and Fulham.

Having drawn 0-0 at Anfield in the first leg last month, Neville believes Klopp should be encouraged to make the pursuit of leaders City their priority.

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Highlights from Liverpool's 0-0 draw at Everton in the Premier League

Speaking on the Gary Neville Podcast, the former Manchester United defender said: "Getting points on the board is a big advantage. I always thought that if Liverpool could win the league this season then they'd need a clean fixture list.

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"I'm going to say it: go out against Bayern Munich. That sounds like madness.

Bayern Munich frustrated Liverpool in the Champions League last 16 first leg
Image: Bayern frustrated Liverpool in the Champions League last 16 first leg at Anfield

"Of course, you'd never play to lose a game but it will be in Liverpool's favour if they have a clean run as they can get everyone fresh. City have got a couple of FA Cup games, where Liverpool could go five or six points in front. That's tough to pull back in the closing weeks.

"This title race is still 50-50."

Liverpool host Tottenham later this month and should they progress to the Champions League quarter-finals, a two-legged tie would await either side of the visit of Chelsea to Anfield on April 14.

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Jurgen Klopp reacted angrily to a suggestion that Liverpool have not taken enough risks in recent weeks, following their goalless draw with Everton

Jamie Carragher believes his former side must remain in striking distance heading into the final month of the season, when he believes the fixtures turn against the defending champions.

He said: "Liverpool have to stay with Manchester City until there are four or five games to go. Manchester City's last six fixtures include Tottenham, Manchester United and away to Burnley - they also will have Champions League fixtures in between, although we don't know how far both teams will go.

"When City play in the FA Cup, Liverpool play on those days too. If Liverpool can win on those days it puts the pressure on City to win a game in hand. One of those games in hand is Manchester United in midweek. If Liverpool can get results on the board in FA Cup weekends, that could put pressure on City."

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