Liverpool v Manchester United is unquestionably one of the biggest rivalries in football and a clash that normally makes one throw form out of the window. That said it is tough to do that when it comes to Liverpool. Top of the Premier League and through to the last 16 of the Champions League, Jurgen Klopp’s team will not only want to keep hold of top spot but make a serious statement that they are ready to lift their first Premier League title since the 1989/90 season.
Manchester United have been below par this season, however Mourinho will know that a win for his team could spark a confident run during the festive season which sees 15-points up for grabs. Form Labs bring you their betting preview and tip s for what will be a highly passionate affair and don’t forget to check out our comprehensive selection of enhanced odds for the game.
Liverpool and Man United legends John Aldridge and Brian McClair give their verdict ahead of the game
Liverpool Setting The Pace
After results last weekend, Liverpool are back at the top of the Premier League for the first time since September. They host fierce rivals Man Utd, and like Man City did when dominating United in the Manchester Derby a few weeks back, the challenge for Liverpool is to see whether they can replicate this.
In the past, it would be typical of Jose Mourinho to come to Anfield and spoil the party – as he’s done with goalless draws in his two visits as the Red Devil’s boss – but such is the widening gap between the two sides that we just can’t envisage that here.
Their only victory in the league over their last five came hosting a dire Fulham side, and their midweek defeat in the Champions League just proved they haven’t turned a corner as Valencia, who are 15th in La Liga, bossed proceedings.
Liverpool Unbeaten Against Big Six
Since 2016/17, Liverpool are W5-D6-L0 hosting fellow ‘Big Six’ sides as they’ve kept six clean sheets in this time. It’s hard to believe that they’ve only beaten United once at Anfield since Fergie retired, which came back in 2013/14 when David Moyes was in charge, but we don’t see that as an issue as the two teams have gone in opposite directions since the summer.
Some lacklustre defending has probably been Liverpool’s undoing in the past, but Jurgen Klopp recognised his sides’ weaknesses and was given the money to sort things out. They look so solid and composed with Allison in goal and Virgil Van Dijk marshalling the defence that they’ve conceded just six times this term. Only one of these came at Anfield – to Cardiff of all teams – and stretching back into last season they’ve kept an incredible 11 clean sheets in their last 12 here.
Injury Concerns For Both Klopp And Mourinho
Now, Klopp does have some injury concerns with Joel Matip joining Joe Gomez and Trent Alexander-Arnold on the sidelines, but James Milner and Fabinho can both be trusted in the right-back position, while Dejan Lovren did recently make it to a World Cup final and he has the reassurance of playing alongside the dominant figure of Van Dijk.
United meanwhile, are still without their best defender this season, Victor Lindelof, while top scorer Anthony Martial, who was responsible for four of their five goals against the Big Six this term, is unlikely to take part.
Although the Red Devils recorded 0-0 stalemates in their two visits here under Mourinho, they managed just two shots on target across those 180 minutes, as David de Gea produced man of the match performances in both. With their defence ever-changing there is no way they’re keeping Liverpool out, so we’re happy to side with the home win to nil.
Salah Back In Top Form
Not only do we see the visitors struggling to penetrate the Merseyside defence, just as worryingly, Mo Salah is rediscovering his sensational form from last season.
After a slow start to the campaign, last year’s player of the season has stepped on the throttle in recent weeks, backing up his hat-trick at Bournemouth with the crucial goal against Napoli to send Liverpool through to the Champions League knockout stages.
What’s more, he’s having an influence early on in games as in the 10 matches in which he’s scored in this season, he’s netted the first on eight occasions, including each of the last five.
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