The increasingly bitter rivalry spilled over at the Premier League fixture at Anfield in October when Klopp was banned for screaming at an match official and coins were allegedly thrown at Guardiola. In addition there were abusive chants about Hillsborough in the away end and, not for the first time, City’s coach was attacked by Liverpool fans outside Anfield.
This week the two club’s chief executives tried to diffuse tension writing to fans ahead of Thursday’s Carabao Cup fourth-round clash, appealing for an end to the animosity. But Guardiola accepted the two managers have a huge role to play in keeping the peace.
Asked whether the pair should carry added responsibility, he said: “Absolutely. The clubs try to create a good environment. It’s just a football game so let’s make people happy, that’s what we try to do.”
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“We will always react in that way but respect for the officials, the rules and the opponent is always there from my point of view, absolutely. Reactions happen, that’s why the referees are there – to react and do what they believe is correct.
“The clubs try to create a good environment, it’s a football game. Try to create the emotions we are seeing in the World Cup, in Argentina right now, in the streets. You see that, it’s amazing, so we want to try. Everything we can build with the clubs, managers, players and so on. It’s just a game, let’s make people happy, that’s what we try to do.”