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Kompany says City are ready for Liverpool battle

Skipper Vincent Kompany says City are ready for Sunday’s clash with Liverpool and know what to expect.

The Belgian centre-half, fresh from the Blues’ 2-1 win against Hoffenheim insists it is too soon for either side to gain a decisive advantage in the title race, but the match is an opportunity for one of the sides to take the initiative going into the international break.

READ: Hoffenheim 1 City 2: Official verdict

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Speaking to Sky Sports, Kompany said: “It’s a big game - both teams are at the top of the table and playing well but it’s too early in the season for it to be a defining match, but it certainly feels a lot more than just three points is at stake.

“These are the games you want to win. They are a team in form and at Anfield, we know this will be a difficult game for us, but I think this City side has shown in the past that we are always up for these games.

Elsewhere – and staying with Sky – there is an in-depth look at the fascinating subplot at club and international level between Brazilian keepers Alisson and Ederson.

CLASS ACT: Ederosn

The eyes of the nation will be on the game on Sunday, but the eyes of Brazil will also be on two of the most coveted custodians in world football as well.

Adam Bate writes: “Sometimes all it needs is a spark. Scouting like so much else is susceptible to trends. So, when the world and its recruitment departments sit down to watch Liverpool versus Manchester City on Sunday, the sight of two accomplished Brazilian goalkeepers in action will not go unnoticed. Alisson and Ederson could just be the start of it, thinks Heurelho Gomes.

‘It is amazing to see them,’ he says. ‘This is an amazing thing for us to have two Brazilian goalkeepers playing for two of the best teams in the league. I believe what was important for them both is that they had experience in Europe beforehand, but they have both adapted very quickly over here which is very difficult.

‘With Alisson and Ederson we can say that we have two very good goalkeepers and I am so happy to have played my part in opening the door for Brazilian goalkeepers. Now they have started to look at Brazilian goalkeepers with different eyes.’

Reflecting on City’s crucial win over Hoffenheim, The Independent focus on David Silva’s outstanding performance that was capped by a late winner a they report: “David Silva has won two European Championships and one World Cup, but the Champions League is the one that still drives him on.

“He is 32 years old now and will not get many more shots at it. So here in Germany, with three minutes left in this frustrating game, Silva got City’s campaign back on track.

WINNER: David Silva is mobbed by team-mates

“Without Silva’s late winner, City would be stuck on one point at the wrong end of Group F, facing more finals just to get them into the last-16. Pep Guardiola said on Monday he wanted his team to ‘suffer’ in the group stage, but this would have meant some extreme masochism.

“So, Silva intervened. It was a goal of instinct, anticipation and ruthlessness, one that needed him to be at his sharpest even at the end of a game in which everyone else looked exhausted. Because up until then City had struggled, looking vulnerable on the break to a very impressive Hoffenheim side. It was only late in the second half when Guardiola switched to 3-4-3, making crucial changes, that City got a hold on the game.”

And boss Pep Guardiola says Silva is one of the best players he's ever coached - now that's saying something!

The MEN report: "City would love to help Silva lift the Champions League trophy before he retires, and Guardiola singled him out as one of the best he has ever trained.

'I think everyone deserves to win it,' Guardiola said. 'He won the World Cup, and Euros - he wants to win it but you don’t just win with desire.

'He's one of the best players I've trained. I've had a lot at Barca and Bayern but he's on that list.

'I love players who make a step forward in the bad moments and say 'OK I'm here guys'.”

Finally, the man himself gave his verdict to Uefa.com after last night’s victory…

‘It was a difficult match and I was lucky enough to score in the closing minutes,’ said Silva.

‘I saw the defender was trying to control the ball and I got there first and was able to slot it home. I’m very pleased we’ve picked up three very important points against a very good side.’

That’s all for today – more gossip, rumour and comment on the Blues tomorrow.

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