Manchester United v Liverpool is arguably one of the biggest matches in world football. Jose Mourinho’s men head to Anfield knowing that claiming all three points is crucial to keeping the pressure on Manchester City at the top of the Premier League table.
Manchester United have been going from strength to strength this season, winning six out of their seven league games. The Red Devil’s have looked unstoppable going forward scoring on average three per game. Manchester United have also looked solid defensively, only Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting has beaten David De Gea in the league this season.
Meanwhile, Liverpool have been suffering lately, having only won one game in their last six in all competitions. Failure to strengthen defensively in the summer is already costing them points. Liverpool have conceded twelve goals in seven games so far this season, only three teams have a worse record (Crystal Palace, West Ham and Watford). On the other hand, Liverpool have looked good offensively, creating the most chances in the Premier League this season.
United will be without three key midfielders for this massive clash. Paul Pogba, Marouane Fellaini and Michael Carrick will all miss the trip to Anfield. Romelu Lukaku had an injury scare while on international duty but should be fit to play on Saturday after coming off the bench to score in Belgiums 4-0 win over Cyprus. Phil Jones was another casualty of the international break, having been sent home with a knee injury. It remains to be seen whether he will be fit enough to start at the weekend.
Liverpool suffered a massive blow last weekend with the news that the influential Sadie Mane would face up to six weeks on the sidelines with a hamstring injury. Adam Lallana and Nathaniel Clyne also look set to miss the game on Saturday. Brazilian pair Phillipe Coutinho and Roberto Firmino face a long journey back from International duty but should be fine for the weekend.
Surprisingly, Manchester United have won three out of their last five Premier League games at Anfield, only losing one.
On the other hand, Juergen Klopp has the advantage over Mourinho when it comes to the head to head between the two managers. Klopp has only lost once in seven against the United boss, winning three of these encounters.
Martin Atkinson has been appointed as the referee for this North West Derby. The last time Atkinson took charge of this game, he sent Steven Gerrard off 38 seconds after the midfielder came off the bench. United haven’t lost to Liverpool when Atkinson has been officiating.
This fixture has seen 16 red cards, the second most in the Premier League era (only behind Liverpool v Everton on 21).
Liverpool away is always a tough game but I believe that United’s firepower will be too strong for Liverpool’s vulnerable defence. Lukaku has been on fire this season, scoring eleven goals in ten club games, and I expect him to carry this form on with a brace on Saturday.
Score Prediction: Liverpool 0 – 2 Manchester United