Everton manager Ronald Koeman has expressed his admiration for Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool saying that the Reds have the ability to win the Premier League this season. Speaking about title challengers, Koeman has also refused to rule out Manchester United despite them being 6th in the points table.
When asked to predict the Premier League title winners for the 2016-17 season, Everton manager Ronald Koeman said, "It's still too early to say who will be the favourites, but I have been impressed by Liverpool so far," reported ESPN.in at the launch of the “Kick It With Help” anti-smoking campaign.
An Everton manager praising their cross-town rivals Liverpool might not go down well with the fans, but Koeman says that Liverpool deserved to be on the top of the table for the way they have played this season.
"Maybe that is not what you might expect the Everton manager to say, but they have been playing some very good football and deserve to be at the top. They have goals in their team and this is what all successful sides need,” the Dutchman reasoned.
The Red half of Merseyside sit at the top of the Premier League table with 26 points after 11 league games this season, but Koeman was also quick to point out the quality of other teams like Manchester City and Chelsea.
"Of course they[Liverpool] can be champions this season, they have a good chance, but they are not the only contenders.
"My Everton team has played Manchester City and Chelsea in the last few weeks and both were very impressive. We managed to draw at City, but you could see the quality of these teams.
Speaking about his team's recent thrashing at the hands of Antonio Conte's Chelsea, Koeman said, "Then we all know what happened at Chelsea, as we lost 5-0 and they put in a very good performance. It was difficult for us, but you have to be impressed from their side, so maybe they can also have a chance."
"I see this as a very open title race. You have four or five teams in contention and even though Manchester United have had some problems so far, they can still go on a good run and put some wins together,” the 53-year old said.
"United have a new manager and they will improve in what is an unpredictable Premier League season. People expect someone like this with such a big record to win games instantly, but it is not so easy.