A mouthwatering encounter awaits at Anfield this Sunday as traditional English rivals Liverpool and Manchester United lock horns for the first time this season.
This is a huge game for both teams and it has massive implications is so far as the title race is concerned. Read on to get our betting predictions for the game.
Liverpool have blown hot and cold this season. They were installed as odds-on favourites to defend their title after outclassing Tottenham here and crushing Crystal Palace 7-0 in their own backyard in mid-December. However, the Reds come out ice cold in the next three fixtures, drawing against both West Brom and Newcastle before succumbing to a shock 1-0 loss at Southampton to all but surrender the top spot to their rivals.
Injuries to key personnel mean they have had a significantly bumpier ride in this season’s campaign, a far cry from their title-winning run last season where they were basically coasting to the title at this same stage of the season.
Jurgen Klopp fielded a relatively strong team against a young Aston Villa team in their last match and they ran comfortable 4-1 winners. His big guns Sadio Mande and Salah were on the scoresheet and he is hoping they that will give them much needed confidence following their prolonged drought.
Manchester United have recovered from a slow start to their EPL campaign. Paul Pogba’s deflected volley earned them a hard-fought 1-0 win at Burnley, which enabled them to leapfrog Liverpool as the outright league leaders. This is the first time they lead the league at this stage of the season since the exit of Alex Ferguson after 2012-13 season.
United have not had as many injury issues as their hosts and Pogba’s form, alongside the continued brilliance of Bruno Fernandes, who earned a club fourth Premier League player of the month award, has allowed Solskjaer the chance to build strong formations around them to great effect.
The Red Devils have fallen short against high profile teams the last couple of seasons. They have failed to get past semi-finals of cup competitions in this time and lost this corresponding fixture 2-0 last season. That said, they look like a different team and will look to make a statement of their intent and title credentials here.
Emotions will be at fever pitch when these teams line up at Anfield. There is no love lost between them. They are the biggest rivals in English football and the fact that they are coming into this match as first and second on the table just adds the powder to the keg. Even without the usually intimidating Kop crowd the game still has all the ingredients of a chirpy and explosive encounter. Centre referee Paul Tierney has shown no hesitation in enforcing control in his games this season, dishing out 43 yellows in the 10 matches he has overseen. We fancy he will have a busy afternoon and we are backing Over 4.5 bookings @ 2.10 with Interwetten bookie review as our initial tip here.
Even though Liverpool have turned Anfield into a complete fortress in recent years, Manchester United’s recent form in the league is hard to ignore. They are unbeaten in their last 11 games (9 wins, 2D). Their away form is even more ominous for Liverpool with seven wins and a draw in their eight matches, scoring 22 goals. The 1-0 win over Burnley was actually the first time they failed to score two or more in their away fixtures. Something has to give here and we are going for United maintain their terrific form with a win or draw @ 1.83 for our last shout here.
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