Achieving the hat-trick, “I don’t think he knows that feeling”: Erling Haaland took a swipe at Trent Alexander-Arnold on Thursday after a statement from the Liverpool defender associating Manchester City’s sporting successes with its great financial resources.

The tension rises a notch before Sunday’s show at Anfield between the leader Liverpool and their runner-up City, one point behind in the standings after 27 days of the championship. The first fuse was lit earlier in the week by Trent Alexander-Arnold, iconic player for Liverpool, his hometown.

“It’s hard. We are facing a machine built to win – that’s the simplest way to describe City and its organization,” the English defender told FourFourTwo magazine, referring to the financial strength of the Emirati owners. In recent years, he added, “even though they have won more titles than us and have probably been more successful, our trophies will mean more to us and our supporters because of the financial situation of both clubs.” .

Manchester City, owned since 2008 by a member of the Abu Dhabi ruling family, has dominated the championship, winning five of the last six titles. The only one that escaped him, in 2020, returned to Liverpool, a club bought ten years earlier by the Americans Fenway Sports Group. Arriving in the summer of 2022 from Dortmund, Haaland had a stratospheric first season (52 goals) with the Citizens, winners of the championship, the FA Cup and the Champions League.

“I’ve been here for a year and I won the treble, it was a nice feeling,” said the Norwegian striker, invited by Sky Sports to comment on Alexander-Arnold’s comments. “I don’t think he knows that feeling, but that’s what I felt last season and it was very nice.”