​Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has once again insisted that Liverpool are the toughest team he has ever faced as a manager.

The two sides battled it out for Premier League supremacy last season, with City ultimately coming out on top. However, the Citizens' frustrating start to the current campaign has seen Liverpool open up a five-point lead already.

Gabriel Jesus

Speaking ahead of his side's meeting with ​Watford (via ​The Mirror), Guardiola stated that he has never faced an opponent like ​Liverpool because they are incredibly strong in every aspect of the game.

He said: “The opponent we have is the strongest opponent I have faced in my career as a manager - Liverpool.

“I said it when we were in front, I said it when they were in front, I said it when we won, I said it when we lose, I’ve said many times because they have absolutely everything, in the positioning game, in the counter-attack, set-pieces, transitions, Anfield, the stadium. I know how difficult it was, I know how difficult it is and will be. But that’s the challenge we have.”

This is not the first time that Guardiola has heaped praise on Liverpool. Back in April, the Spaniard ​first admitted that Liverpool have 'everything', explaining that the Reds were tactically and defensively elite.

Liverpool actually had a ten-point lead at one point last season, but ​City managed to fight back and secure the title, and Guardiola insisted that, despite losing to ​Norwich City last time out, he does not believe that the title race is over.

Raheem Sterling

“After watching the game against Norwich I was not really upset by the way we played. I was upset against ​Newcastle because after one minute, we forgot to play. But the game against Norwich that didn’t happen," Guardiola added.

“We accept it. It doesn’t happen many times. I’m relaxed. When we lose, I’m not depressed. It’s going to happen. There are 99 points to play for, we are five behind, 99 still to play, let’s see how many we can get."