JURGEN KLOPP is adamant Liverpool would have to find someone very special to do a better job than him.
Yet he is in danger of completing the same set of stats that saw predecessor Brendan Rodgers sacked.
The Northern Irishman was dismissed after picking up just 12 points from the first eight games of the 2015-16 Premier League campaign.
A lunchtime defeat to Jose Mourinho’s men today would leave Klopp on exactly the same mark after the same number of games.
Victory for Jose Mourinho would also take his Manchester United ten points clear of their Anfield rivals.
But Klopp goes into the first game of his third year in charge in defiant mood.
He stressed: “If they sacked me now I don’t think a lot of managers would do the job better than I do.”
The German completed two years as Rodgers’ successor earlier this week and admitted: “Actually, it wasn’t a big party. I’m not overly happy and I didn’t immediately open a bottle of champagne.
“But for me, it’s been a wonderful time and I’ve enjoyed each second.
“Is it a difficult job? Yes. Are we where we could be? Not sure. Did we do really well last year? Yes.
“Have we done better this year? Yes. But we didn’t get the results so far. Does that mean I should stop? No.
“We had to improve to be in the situation we are now.
“If we hadn’t have improved we wouldn’t have been where we were last season.
“There’s not the biggest distance between us and the top teams.
“If I came in today as the new manager and if everybody would give us this kind of time to take the next step that would be perfect. I’m not perfect but it’s quite difficult to find better options.
“I still think that as long as 98 per cent of Liverpudlians think that we can go on the right way then we will succeed.”
The United clash marks the first home game since a stand at Anfield was named after Kenny Dalglish, the last manager to take a top-flight title to Anfield in 1990.
That took Liverpool’s tally to 18 and a seventh in ten years.
But Klopp says the club will never see the like again.
He said: “The good old times when one team dominated the league for 20 years won’t come back.
“Our job is to work in this moment and fight with all we’ve got for each point. I feel like we’re in the middle of everything and I’m calm and cool with all the things we still have to do.”
Liverpool have won just once in seven games, yet bullish Klopp added: “We are in a really good moment. Not results-wise but performances haven’t been as bad as some people think.”
In an interview with Sky Sports last night, Klopp added: “Look at how confidence is growing. We have a good side. Since the start of the season people talk about defending and how we didn’t buy a defender.
“And it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. Each mistake we do, ‘my God we have said that all the time’.
“The players are good enough. We always try to improve. We don’t say it’s luck and we change it.
“The challenge is to stay confident and play football even when we don’t have the results.
“We don’t have to think too much about performance.
“Yes, we have to improve in defending our offensive situations. We are not outplayed.
“We have improved a lot in creating chances. But people say I have no ‘Plan B’. Whatever that is exactly.
“The Plan B is what we do now, we have to develop things.
“We have conceded too many goals. Three in Watford and five against City. City was the worst place to play with one man down.”
Klopp also refuses to allow the six-week loss of Sadio Mane to get him down. Mane picked up a hamstring injury playing for Senegal but his manager said: “Thank God we can still play football without Sadio.”