Ralph Hasenhuttl is showing he is very much his own man as he brushes off comparisons with Jurgen Klopp.

The Austrian arrived at St Mary’s with the nickname of the ‘Alpine Klopp’ due to their similar styles of play.

While Hasenhuttl has admitted he can understand why he might be likened to Liverpool’s manager there is little doubt he is making plenty of ripples in the Premier League by doing things his own way.

He said: “The reason why the people compare us is maybe because we are playing similar football with pressing style and we are very emotional on the line.

“I think it is finished there the comparisons because I am a character we can’t compare.

“He makes a fantastic job in Liverpool and I try to do my job here and I think we are both successful so far.”

Klopp has been fulsome of his praise in Hasenhuttl in the build-up to the match with the pair’s friendship stretching back many years. They even went up against each other as players – albeit only for 11 minutes.

“I think he uses very often warm words for the opposition managers,” reckoned Hasenhuttl.

“I know him as a very honest guy and I know that if he says something like that it’s not only a tactic but it’s honest.

“He knows me for a long time although we didn’t play a lot of times against each other.

“We had our coaching badges and we were starting them together and we know each other for a long time. We played against each other.

“It was a long time we are working together.”

Hasenhuttl is clearly relishing the chance to pit his wits against Klopp and expects the pair to be very active in the technical areas at St Mary’s tonight.

“If you want it’s one of the two top teams in England but the top six are not easy to play against. It’s the first time we play against a very good pressing team and the style of football I prefer,” he reflected.

“You can see this team is one step or two steps ahead in their development. Good balance and organised team with a clear plan and nice to watch also for me.

“It will be a very interesting game for the coaches for both sides and we will have to do a lot of work with coaching the team.

“It is maybe a big challenge, but I like this challenge.

“Jurgen is a guy you can see if he’s angry outside because something doesn’t work as he wanted and it’s normal you act like this on the line.

“Against good opponents you must do it more because they see every space that gets open immediately, they find always the right decision and you have to shout from outside because it’s not so easy if the atmosphere is a good one and I think on the Friday evening against Liverpool it will be very loud and difficult to coach from outside but if we can do it we will.”