Ricardo Pereira believes Liverpool have not locked in the Premier League title yet, with his Leicester City side primed to take on the leaders at the King Power Stadium on Boxing Day.
Having played one extra game than the Reds, the Foxes trail their league leaders by 10 points as they seek to win their second Premier League title and deny Jurgen Klopp’s side their first.
Pereira feels that the Champions League winners are yet to sew up the top-flight trophy, citing their failure to outlast Manchester City in last year’s title race, and is adamant Brendan Rodgers’ team can get a favourable result on Thursday.
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“Here in England, you never know [about the Premier League race],” Pereira told Goal. “It’s true that 10 points ahead of second is a lot.
“But last year too, they were seven points ahead, and Manchester City finally won the title. I think that is not done yet, even if they have a very good advantage.
“[Thursday] will be a big game. We will face a very tough opponent, who is also the championship leader. We know it will be difficult, but we will play at home, with our fans.
“I think that if we defend well and we are effective, we can do something.”
Pereira joined the Foxes from Porto at the start of the 2018-19 season and won the club’s player of the year award voted on by its supporters in his first campaign.
The Portuguese defender has been one of the Foxes’ key players this season, along with striker Jamie Vardy, who is currently leading the Premier League’s golden boot race with 17 goals.
Vardy’s importance to Leicester City’s cause cannot be underestimated, according to Pereira, who lauded the never-say-die qualities of the English striker.
“[Vardy is] one of the best,” Pereira said. “I have played with some good strikers, but he’s very efficient, he never gives up.
“He fights to the end when he loses a ball. It’s very important for the team. He helps us a lot with his goals.”
Pereira’s marauding style from the right-back position caught the eye of several clubs during the summer with Paris Saint-Germain and Juventus rumoured to be keen.
The 26-year-old was flattered by the interest from some of Europe’s biggest clubs – especially PSG, with the full-back having previously played two seasons in Ligue 1 for Nice.
However the full-back insisted he was currently solely focused on Leicester’s cause.
“We always want to level up and all the players dream of playing the Champions League,” Pereira said.
“It’s a big competition and it’s good to have been followed by these kind of clubs. These are positive things that inspire me to work.
“You never know what can happen in the future. [PSG is] a big club.
“In addition, I played in France. I know the club and the championship. It’s the biggest club in France. He plays the Champions League and the title in all competitions.
“But for the moment, there is nothing. I must to keep performing with Leicester before.”
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