Why Liverpool FC is 'source of inspiration' for Warriors' Steve Kerr


Why Liverpool FC is 'source of inspiration' for Warriors' Steve Kerr

SAN FRANCISCO -- When Warriors coach Steve Kerr watches soccer, things feel familiar.

Kerr, who supports Liverpool FC in the English Premier League, told NBC Sports Bay Area that he loves "that the teamwork in soccer is very similar to the teamwork in basketball."

"Creating advantages, ball movement, cutting without the ball," Kerr said of the similarities during a Friday interview at Chase Center. "Those things all matter in both sports, so it's fun to watch from a basketball perspective."

His Liverpool support is fitting then. The Reds sat top of the table entering Matchweek 8, eight points clear of reigning champions Manchester City, and few Premier League sides embody those traits more than the Champions League winners.

NBC Sports Bay Area briefly spoke with Kerr about his Liverpool fandom and the club's pursuit of its first ever Premier League title. The ensuing conversation has been lightly edited for clairty.

NBC Sports Bay Area: You've mentioned before rooting for Egypt and Mo Salah is how you got into Liverpool. What have you grown to love about the club since you started rooting for them?
Steve Kerr: Just how they attack. They're constantly pressing forward, and their front line is amazing with [Roberto] Firmino and [Sadio] Mané. Just watching them take control right away, and if they get an early lead, it's like they just strangle you. How do you do anything against them? 

I love watching Jurgen Klopp. As a coach, I watch other coaches, and I can tell that there's something bigger than the game going on with him. They're just a fun group to watch.

So when you watch Liverpool, you don't shut that coaching part of your brain off? You're looking to glean some insights? 
I'm really watching it as a fan, but I do watch some of the interviews with Klopp. He's always a good interview, and last year, I quoted him [after the Warriors' playoff win over the Houston Rockets in May], dropping a couple of F-bombs. But I just loved his approach. They've become really a source of inspiration for me.

When you've won as a player and you've won as a coach, how does that change watching one of your teams win? How did you react when Liverpool won the Champions League title last June?
It was exhilarating, watching that 4-0 comeback [in the second leg of the Champions League semifinal against FC Barcelona]. I'm still a sports fan, a big sports fan, so even though I'm coaching my own team, I'm still cheering for several teams. I cheer for the Dodgers -- they've been my baseball team since I was a kid -- and it's great to have a Premier League team to cheer for because it's such great competition, and the quality of play is so amazing. It's really been fun just to kind of have a new sport to cheer and a new team to cheer for.

It's still early in the season, but Liverpool is eight points up on Manchester City. When do you as a fan allow yourself to say, 'Hey, they've got a good title shot this year?'
Well, last year was insane. To not win with that point total (97), but it was probably -- I'm guessing -- the highest point total ever for a team not to win. It was an amazing two-team race with two all-time great teams, and I think this year is probably more about the Premier League than about the Champions League. The start is fantastic, but there's 30 games left, so a long way to go.

Crystal Palace-Chelsea live stream: How to watch EPL game online, on TV

Crystal Palace-Chelsea live stream: How to watch EPL game online, on TV

Chelsea have won three of four since the Premier League's "Project Restart" began at the end of June, and they will look to keep the good times rolling Tuesday when they travel to Selhurst Park to take on Crystal Palace.

The Blues (17-6-10; 57 points) recently have been led by American sensation Christian Pulisic, who has scored two goals in four games since the restart. The 21-year-old has seven goals this season.

Chelsea enters the match in fourth place in the Premier League table, one point behind Leicester City, who play Arsenal on Tuesday.

Palace (11-9-13; 42 points) have lost their last three Premier League matches, and sit in 14th place in the table.

Here's how to watch Crystal Palace vs. Chelsea live online and on TV:

When: Tuesday, July 7, 2020 at 12:55 p.m. ET/9:55 a.m. PT

Arsenal-Leicester City live stream: How to watch EPL game online, on TV

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Arsenal-Leicester City live stream: How to watch EPL game online, on TV

Arsenal will be looking for some revenge when they host Leicester City on Tuesday morning, as the Foxes have defeated the Gunners in three of their last four matchups.

Jamie Vardy and Leicester City enter the contest third in the table, just four spots above Arsenal. Vardy has nine goals in his last nine league matches against the Gunners.

Here's how to watch Arsenal vs. Leicester City live from Emirates Stadium.

When: Tuesday, July 7 at 3:15 p.m. ET/12:15 p.m. PT
Live stream: NBC Sports