Liverpool entered the international break top of the Premier League table, though Jurgen Klopp tried to temper the hype surrounding his team by delivering a message of “stay cool”.
The Reds were scintillating in a 6-1 thrashing of Watford at Anfield as they rose to the division’s summit for the first time since May 2014, when their quest for an elusive Premier League title eluded them at the death.
Eleven games may be an early stage to judge whether Klopp’s current crop can sustain their own push for the championship but with 30 goals in 11 games, they have the requisite firepower to blitz most teams, as the Hornets found out on Sunday.
Sadio Mane grabbed two while there were goals for Philippe Coutinho, Emre Can, Roberto Firmino and Georginio Wijnaldum as Liverpool seized their moment when Arsenal’s draw at Tottenham earlier in the day left top spot available for the Reds.
“If somebody thinks being one point ahead after 11 match days is a big sign for the rest of the season then I can’t help this person,” Klopp warned.
“We stay cool. It’s the best position I can imagine but nothing else has happened.
“We knew that Arsenal drew against Tottenham but we didn’t speak one word about the possibility of being top of the table.
“There’s no pressure after 11 match days, absolutely no pressure. We saw Chelsea (on Saturday), quite impressive, (Manchester) City playing Barcelona, quite impressive. Man United - never write them off, Tottenham (are a) good side. There’s a lot of really good teams around.
“You can play a really good season and you could be fifth or sixth and nobody would be really happy. So, stay cool, take the things like they are, play your best, win games, that’s the only thing we can do.
“When I came here I asked for time and patience and belief, and after 11 match days everyone’s asking for guarantees and they are not there. The only thing we have is a pretty good football team.”
While Klopp may be reluctant to pin his team as legitimate contenders, his Watford counterpart certainly feels they can be considered challengers for the domestic crown.
The Hornets have already faced Arsenal, Chelsea and Manchester United this term and their manager Walter Mazzarri believes Liverpool are a class above.
“From the teams we’ve played there’s no doubt it’s the team I’m most impressed with,” the Italian said of Liverpool.
“If they continue like this they are number one in my list for winning the Premier League. This is only from the teams I’ve played against.”