Steven Gerrard has named Manchester City as his ‘big favourite’ to win the Champions League this season.
Pep Guardiola’s City have made a sensational start to the 2017-18 campaign, winning seven of their eight league games to emerge as the early frontrunners in the Premier League title race.
They continued their impressive form in Europe on Tuesday night, securing a 2-1 victory over Napoli to ensure they have now taken nine points from their three Champions League group matches.
Liverpool legend Gerrard labelled City’s win over the Italians as a ‘statement performance’ and went so far as to say the Manchester club are now ‘big favourites’ to win the Champions League.
Asked about the impressive performances of English clubs in this year’s competition, Gerrard told BT Sport: ‘Some of them got kind groups so you’d expect them to progress, but they’ve been doing well.
‘The statement performance was City against a good Napoli side. City look real big favourites in this competition for me.’ Fellow former England star Rio Ferdinand added: ‘The last few years have been a bit of a transition [for the English clubs in Europe].
‘Now money has been spent and it’s coming to fruition for them. The teams are starting to form a bond together and long may that success continue.’
Liverpool are also unbeaten in this year’s Champions League and secured their best-ever European victory over Slovenian outfit Maribor on Tuesday night.
Manager Jurgen Klopp said: ‘The result was really outstanding, spot on from the first second.
The counter-pressing was the best I saw for a long time. ‘We scored wonderful goals, played wonderful football, it was difficult against us today.
I also love the fact we stayed concentrated in the second-half and could have even scored more.’