Paul Ince looks on next to his wife Claire during the Premier League match between Huddersfield Town and Southampton.
Paul Ince thinks that if Liverpool lose to Manchester United in the lunchtime kickoff in the Premier League this Saturday (October 14) then they are already out of the title race.
The former midfielder, who played for both of the great rivals, believes that the points gap would be too large to make up even at this early stage of the season.
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp gestures on the touchline during the English Premier League football match against Newcastle United.
"If Liverpool lose, could you really class them as title contenders?" Ince was quoted by the Liverpool Echo. "At the minute, I can't see it anyway. They're way behind United and City and if they drop three more points here, they're not going to make that gap up – no chance. It's a huge game for Liverpool.
"If you look at the two sides at the minute, everything considered, you have to say United are way ahead of Liverpool.
"Klopp hasn't found the right formula for his team yet and, after this length of time at the club, with the players he has, he really should have."
Jose Mourinho, manager of Manchester United, handles the ball during the Premier League match against Crystal Palace at Old Trafford.
The Reds are already seven points off United in the table having drawn at home to Burnley and away at Watford and Newcastle United, as well as being beaten 5-0 at Manchester City.
The Red Devils, in contrast, have won all but one of their matches - a 2-2 draw at Stoke City - and are only off top spot because of goal difference.
If Jurgen Klopp's men were to suffer defeat at Anfield then that gap would extend to ten points, which would be extremely difficult to make up even with 30 games left to play.
However, the home side can take solace in the fact that Klopp has beaten opposite number Jose Mourinho on three of the seven occasions they have met in their careers to date, with the Portuguese triumphing just once.