Manchester United vs Liverpool : Preview

Battle for Pride and Second Place

 

Given that Manchester City are running away with the title, the next best thing would be to finish 2nd.

Finishing 2nd would mean that Liverpool have placed ahead of United for the second season running, even after Jose Mourinho’s fabled ‘second season’.

This fixture is undoubtedly the greatest rivalry in England, and one of the biggest games in world football.

In recent history, this fixture has been somewhat even, mainly due to Mourinho’s insistence of making an exciting fixture as dull as possible, leading to many draws.

It remains to be seen if the controversial Portuguese manager reverts to the same tactics given Liverpool’s red-hot form and ability to find the back of the net with regularity.

Manchester United

Team News and Predicted Lineup

manutd

United are missing several players through injury including Daley Blind, Ander Herrera, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Phil Jones and Marcos Rojo, Anthony Martial is also a major doubt.

Paul Pogba picked up a leg gash in training which could keep him out, if so, Mourane Fellaini could come into the team.

The rest of the team will be the same lineup that’s featured in the last few weeks, but Mourinho could switch to a 4-2-3-1 as he did in the closing stages of their match against Crystal Palace.

Liverpool

Team News and Predicted Lineup

livmanuted

Gini Wijnaldum is unlikely to feature as he recovers from illness, and Jordan Henderson is a doubt after suffering a dead leg against Porto.

The back five and front three pick themselves, but the midfield could be subject to change depending on availability.

If Henderson is fit to start then either James Milner or Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain will drop out of the team, but Dejan Lovren will almost certainly start ahead of Joel Matip.

Analysis

 

Bias aside, it is clear that Liverpool are currently a superior team to United, they’re lucky to be in second place, but it is impressive how they are able to pick up wins and draws when they’re playing badly.

United’s plan will the same as usual under Mourinho, try to nick a goal while sitting back and defending for their lives.

Jurgen Klopp’s men will have to be in top form to break their stubborn defence down and snatch 2nd place from United’s hands.

Prediction

 

When the two teams faced each other earlier in the season, United were flying, and Liverpool were struggling.

Even then, United could only just hang on for a draw, but this time the tables have turned; Liverpool are playing tremendously and United are just scraping by and they have a crucial Champions League game in a few days.

This time around, Liverpool will break through Mourinho’s bus and silence Old Trafford with a 3-1 win.

 

You’ll Never Walk Alone

 

Cieren O’Dea

 

Red Or Dead – Liverpool FC Football Blog – 10/03/2018.

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