The fact both Liverpool and Manchester United are competing in the upper reaches of the Premier League makes Sunday's clash at Old Trafford 'more important than ever', Alberto Moreno feels.
Going into this weekend’s top-flight fixtures, the Reds sit second in the table - five points adrift of pace-setters Chelsea and five clear of sixth-placed United.
With just 10 points separating the leading six teams in the division shortly after the midway point of the season, an exciting, closely-fought second half of the campaign at the top appears likely.
And while Liverpool versus United is hardly a fixture that requires any extra spice, Moreno thinks the situation in the table means Sunday’s match has taken on an added significance.
“It’s a great game to look forward to. Both sets of fans, obviously our fans, can’t wait for those sorts of games to come around and the players are no different,” the left-back told Liverpoolfc.com.
“We know it’s going to be a tough game, it’s a tough ask to go there and do well, and it’s even more important because we’re both rivals in the upper part of the table, we’re both right up there so it’s even more important than ever.
“Playing in a derby match is great, all players enjoy that and me especially. I love the challenge of derby games and if you can win, it makes it even more extra special, so I can’t wait for it to come around.”
Despite playing his part in last season’s Europa League victory, Moreno is yet to be on the winning side in a Premier League meeting with United, with the Reds having not taken three points from a top-flight trip to Old Trafford since March 2014.
Sunday would be the ideal time to buck those recent trends, then?
“Absolutely. Wherever we go, we go out to win the game, whether it’s at Anfield or wherever, we want to get the three points,” the Spaniard asserted.
“In my time at the club I’ve never won a league game against Manchester United so I’m anxious for that to come about. So why not this weekend?”
James Milner’s excellence at left-back has restricted Moreno to seven league appearances this season, with five of those coming from the bench.
However, Jürgen Klopp went on record to praise the 24-year-old’s attitude in training earlier in the campaign, and the former Sevilla man has vowed to keep striving to impress at Melwood.
“I’m still the same player that I’ve always been. So that means I work, both on the field and in training, in the same way,” Moreno added.
“I’m always at 100 per cent, really giving it everything I’ve got in every training session, always working to the limit and the maximum all the time.
“What you need to do then is try to show the manager that you’re ready, I want to demonstrate that I’m ready for whenever he calls on me, but I respect that it’s his decision who plays.
“It’s true that I’ve not had as many opportunities this season, but I’m still the same player and still working hard and that’s what it’s all about - keep positive so that when you are called upon, you’re ready.”