Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has played down the idea that Champions League football - and the additional stress it will put on his squad - will make the Premier League campaign tougher this time out, after it was suggested by Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho.
Speaking to the media in Singapore on Monday night, Klopp was adamant that he could not care less about what the club's rivals were up to in the transfer market after he was pressed for a response to the activity of Everton and Man Utd, while acknowledging he was aware of what was going on.
He was, however, willing to offer his thoughts on Mourinho's suggestion that Liverpool would find their squad stretched by the extra games in Europe, and he rubbished them by pointing out that his side also reached the Europa League final when they found themselves in the competition a year earlier.
The only difference? The calibre of opponent.
I’m not interested in what Jose Mourinho says. Why should I talk about Manchester United? Jose is talking about us, yes.
Okay, we had a season like Man United the year before. I don’t know if anybody asked us how it feels.
Sorry that we lost the final yes, that’s right. We played Sevilla, they played Ajax. That's the difference.
So we suffered during the season. Right. The Europa League was hard. Yes, Chelsea will feel also the difference, they played something like 13 players last season. But it's also not my problem if they use only 11, well done.
Ajax flattered to deceive back in May as they were unable to show the level of football that dispatched of Lyon in the semi finals, whereas Sevilla collected their third Europa League title on the bounce when they faced Liverpool a year earlier.
But it was Mourinho's men who got the job done, and the Portuguese is unlikely to agree with Klopp's assessment.
In actual Liverpool transfer related matters, Andrew Robertson's arrival provoked a great quip from the manager.
When asked a question regarding 1v1 defending being a perceived weakness in the Scot's game, Klopp revealed that he was not worried about that in the slightest.
He is cool, he is not too long in professional football. He played outstandingly well at Hull but people have said ‘In defensive one-on-ones he is not that good.’
That’s not a problem. I can’t teach him playing football because he is already good at that but I can teach him how to deal with one-on-ones because I could do that and I was a really bad footballer.
So, its possible and doing the next step, things like that should still be possible.
It will be interesting to see how hard Robertson can push James Milner for his place in the side, but it's clear that Klopp has brought him in for a reason.