Paul Merson has aired his views on Liverpool’s chances of winning the Premier League and already dismissed one club’s title chances.
The Reds have won four of their first five games and are just two points behind early leaders Manchester City.
Jurgen Klopp’s side have had to overcome several obstacles during the first few weeks of the season, which has demonstrated the resilience that was, perhaps, missing at the start of the previous campaign.
A poor start last season left Liverpool playing catch up and ultimately missing out on the Champions League, despite eventually getting back to their best.
The club have challenged Man City for the title in three of the last five seasons and look on course to do so with a new-look side. Last season, it fell to Arsenal to challenge the dominance of Pep Guardiola’s team.
The former Arsenal midfielder has warned that both sides can ill-afford to make mistakes or risk being cast out of the title picture before Christmas.
Speaking to Sky Sports, the pundit believes he has spotted a problem that could potentially unravel Liverpool’s hopes of challenging for the Premier League, once again.
“Liverpool and Arsenal are the only contenders for Manchester City this season,” Merson said.
“Liverpool were poor against Wolves first half, really poor. But they came out in the second half and blew Wolves away.
“The problem is you can’t be doing that against the better teams. You don’t want to be going to the Emirates or the Etihad and playing like that, the game would be all over in the first half.
“You’ve just got to stick with Man City for as long as you can. Every game that goes by, you have to make sure you’re three points away from them, tops.
“For example, Manchester United are already nine points behind. They’re finished. Done,” Merson added.
“They can’t win the league – because it’s Man City. If it’s any other team you can go, ‘oh if you put a run together, you never know.’ But City are not losing four or five games.
Liverpool currently sit on 13 points, the same number as Arsenal, with both sides drawing one of their five games.
However, Merson has warned his former side that the Gunners could soon find themselves with a mountain to climb after their next three league fixtures, which include hosting local rivals Spurs and Man City.
“The title race used to start in December and January – and it was about who had the best run after that. Now Man City have blown it out of the water. You can’t fall behind,” Merson continued.
“If [Arsenal] lose to Tottenham and Man City, then they’re out of the title race by the start of October.
“Jamie Carragher said Brighton worked out how to beat Manchester United. Now it’s about how you beat Man City. That’s the name of the game for everybody.”