‘I was on the coach as it was bricked… that moment things changed. The rivalry increased and they became our No 1 team to beat’: Vincent Kompany reveals Liverpool fans ignited tension with Manchester City when they attacked his former side’s team bus
- Coach was ambushed last year on the way to Anfield for a European fixture
- In his new book, ‘Treble Triumph’ Vincent Kompany said that changed the rivalry
- ‘The rivalry increased and they became our No 1 team to beat,’ the Belgian said
Ex-Manchester City captain Vincent Kompany has said that the infamous attack on his side’s team bus by Liverpool fans last year saw Jurgen Klopp’s men become their number one rivals.
The coach was ambushed as it headed to Anfield for a Champions League quarter-final in April 2018 and eventually had to be written off due to the damage it sustained.
In his new book, ‘Treble Triumph’ Vincent Kompany: My Inside Story of Manchester City’s Greatest Ever Season, which is being serialised in The Sun, the defender said that day intensified the rivalry between the clubs.
Manchester City’s team bus is pelted with objects as the team arrive for the game in 2018
‘I was on the coach as it was bricked. That moment things changed. The rivalry increased and they became our No 1 team to beat. The mood among City fans towards these games against Liverpool had changed,’ he said.
‘They’d always been seen as tough fixtures but now there was more tension.’
The incident came ahead of a 3-0 loss for City. They also lost the home leg of the tie 2-1.
A close-up of the bus, which had to be written off, shows bottles and cans being launched
The 33-year-old, now a player coach at Anderlecht, added: ‘None of us were sitting on that coach saying they were scared. But it was very unpleasant and should never have been allowed to happen.
‘I do think that incident changed the way that a lot of neutrals looked at Liverpool.’
‘Other things contributed — penalties not given, offsides that should or shouldn’t have been awarded.’
Liverpool apologised, paid compensation and were fined £17,500 by UEFA and, last season, the Premier League match at Anfield passed off without incident.
Liverpool went on to beat City across both legs of the tie but lost to Real Madrid in the final
However, after Merseyside Police confirmed they were aware of one social media post urging fans to bring ‘pyros and pints’, Klopp sought to play down Sunday’s welcome.
‘I’m a big believer of fan power – in the stadium. That’s completely different,’ he said.
‘(The coach incident) was a senseless thing. If somebody at Man City is concerned still, then it’s our fault.
‘Not that we did it all together, we all didn’t throw the bottle or whatever it was, but it was one of us.
‘That’s why we are responsible. All of us have to make sure that something like this will never happen again.’
Merseyside Police said a ‘comprehensive and appropriate’ operation was in place for Sunday.
‘Treble Triumph’ Vincent Kompany: My Inside Story of Manchester City’s Greatest Ever Season is written with Ian Cheeseman and published by Simon & Schuster UK Ltd.