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Jurgen Klopp believes that no one could have won the Premier League this season with the kind of injuries Liverpool have had, even champions Manchester City.
It has been an unhappy title defence for Liverpool, after they won their first league title in 30 years last season, with Klopp's side not looking likely to challenge since January.
Whilst the drop off since the last campaign might be some cause for worry, there's no doubt that Klopp's side have been extremely hampered by injuries.
They have been without centre backs Virgil van Dijk, Joe Gomez and Joel Matip for much of the season and the former Borussia Dortmund boss believes that even City wouldn't have won the league under similar circumstances.
"With our injuries it was not the year to become champions," the Liverpool boss said in his press conference on Friday.
"No chance - for nobody.
"As good as they are, if City have their three centre-halves out, no [they don't win the league]. Three centre-halves of [Manchester] United, no."
Certainly Pep Guardiola has had his best defenders in place for the whole season and the signing of Ruben Dias has had a similar impact to the one Van Dijk had at Anfield when the Dutchman arrived.
Dias won the FWA Player of the Year award this week and, as well as his own form, his presence improved the form of John Stones, who looked on the way out of City last summer.
With Aymeric Laporte also available to Guardiola, it's no doubt their strength at the back is the best in the league, even with Nathan Ake 27 games for the club this season.
Liverpool's form wasn't too bad at the start of the season, even after losing Van Dijk in the 2-2 draw with Everton in October, but they only won three in 12 from the start of January, including a run of four losses in-a-row at one point.
That poor form made it look likely the team would miss out on a top four finish and not be in the Champions League next season.
However the team are unbeaten in nine, winning seven of those, and now look set to finish in the top four, as long as they don't lose to Crystal Palace on Sunday.
Klopp said his players have made the best of their bad situation, saying, "We have fought back a bit, accepted the difficulties and made the best of it, and if we win on Sunday, and if we qualify for the Champions League, then we made the best of it. That is it."
Featured Image Credit: PA
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