Jurgen Klopp admitted Mohamed Salah nearly reduced him to tears after letting Roberto Firmino claim his hat-trick from the penalty spot in the 5-1 demolition of Arsenal.
The ‘Egyptian King’ had already scored from the spot himself, but opted to let his Brazilian teammate score his third in front of the Kop.
Second-placed Tottenham had already blinked first before this match kicked off, losing 3-1 at home to Wolves, and City, now 10 points adrift, cannot afford to do the same at Southampton on Sunday.
A ninth successive Reds victory made it 31 league matches without defeat at Anfield, their joint-third longest run, and extended their unbeaten start to 20 matches.
But Klopp revealed his side would not allow premature title talk to ruin their focus.
“We cannot look too far ahead and we won’t allow that to happen,” declared Klopp. “We were aware of the Tottenham result ahead of this game, but we can’t allow that to affect us.
“The performance in this game suggests we remained focused on what we can affect and that is our own results. We haven’t conceded a lot of goals this year so we didn’t know how we’d react, but the response after Arsenal scored first was world-class.
“We stayed clam and really forced the mistakes. Bobby’s (Firmino) second when Sadio (Mane) won the ball. Wow. It was perfect defending, but we knew in the second half that the game wasn’t finished so we wanted to control it.
“Mo Salah gave the penalty to Bobby and I almost cried because we all know how much Mo wants to score goals. It was really nice. Overall 5-1 against Arsenal doesn’t happen too often so I’m really happy with the boys.
“Now on to the next game. It doesn’t matter how big the lead is in December. We will remember that.”
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Manchester City and Liverpool will face one another at the Etihad on Thursday night in what promises to be an enthralling encounter.
Hopefully Klopp can keep a lid on his emotions if the Premier League leaders can extend their lead at the top.