Liverpool play Man Utd on Monday night. The question is; do games get any bigger? It is and will always the most fiercely contested games in football. The best Club in England (and world) Vs The most successful is ‘recent’ history. Liverpool are in top form at the moment and full of confidence and dare I say a bit of swagger. Utd are not doing as well – however only 3 points behind. They will get better, I’m hoping they don’t rediscover their form in time to face us.
In any game in the Premier League you may as well throw out the form book. So many times we’ve been doing well to then fall at the last hurdle. This game is when we need to change that. The prize at stake is a big one – win and we go joint top with Man Utd’s other bitter rivals Man City.
Guardiola’s start to his City management couldn’t have got off to a better start. However 1 point off a possible 6 has now left the door wide open – rightly so. It’s not a 1 horse race – this is the Premier League.
It’s going to be an interesting game full of drama. However there has been a lot of drama even before the kick off.
Stories about how much Mourinho wanted to become Liverpool manager at the time Benitez was appointed.
The talk of Anthony Taylor being the referee for the game. He was born 15 mins away from Old Trafford. However he has been asked to referee the game against Liverpool!! Really? How? Why? Mourinho has stated it will be hard for Taylor as he is expected to be biased towards Utd, he may compensate towards this and be lenient towards Liverpool – Really Jose, that’s the best you could do? Running scared already or preparing for the interview to justify your loss? hmmm….?!
However there have been news stories circulating that these comments will be investigated.
Man Utd Legend has already stated that there is confusion over Mourinho’s best side, whereas Reds boss Jurgen Klopp has ‘stamped his way of playing football’ on his team. BBC Sport Article.
How will we line up?
Will Klopp go with Sturridge up top? With Firmino and Mane either side? Thus will allow Coutinho a deeper role. Similar set up to when Lallana went off against Swansea.
Man Utd normally line up a 4-2-3-1. However they have struggled when facing a 3-man midfield. Should Liverpool line up in their 4-3-3 i’m convinced that Henderson and Can with the additional man (Coutinho) will boss the midfield. The game will be won here.
Firmino, Coutinho and Mane feeding balls into Sturridge will cause the Utd defence havoc. I can’t see them coping. They haven’t been able to handle pace up to now – we have pace in abundance!!
Will Wijnaldum or Lallana be fit? Will the Brazilian-Boys Firmino and Coutinho be up for the challenge?
Klopp will have his all his players pressing relentlessly, fighting to quickly recycle the ball to start a new fight as quickly as possible. I’m sure the Utd players will be overwhelmed with the sheer intensity, so far everyone else has commented about it.
Should Mouinho use Zlatan Ibrahimovic, would our defenders be equipped to deal with him? I am sure Klopp has been working on this the past 2 weeks.
Liverpool have been weak in defence again this year. Milner has created stability in the Left-back position, but we still flap at set pieces. Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Eric Bailly and Marouane Fellaini are all a potential aerial threat. It is a guarantee that Mourinho would have instructed his team to really exploit this.
Who will be in goal?
Then of course you have the weekly debate. Who will go in goal? Klopp purchased Karius ultimately challenge or replace Mignolet. Karius hasn’t had the best of starts. Flapping in goal occasionally. This is just a matter of confidence. He needs experience – is the Utd game an opportunity, or is it too big a game?
Mignolet has the experience of big games, this could give him the advantage as the thought was he’d possibly be able to deal with the pressure much better than Karius. Possibly?
Stats in our favour
This season in the Premier League Liverpool have covered the most distance, covering more than 810km in their 7 games so far – constant movement creates more gaps for Liverpool’s forward lines to exploit. Consistently passing the ball around creating space retaining possession, Utd will have to work really hard to create an opportunity on goal.
Liverpool have not lost at home in any competition at Anfield since January. Klopp wanted to turn Anfield into a fortress again – it’s looking like it’s almost there! The new stand has already seen 4 goals against Leicester and 5 against Hull. The atmosphere is special, especially when the floodlights are on. It’s reminiscent of a famous European Tie – the chorus of ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’ will really take it up another level.
Anfield is made for nights like this!!
Klopp will have his players pressing relentlessly, fighting to quickly win the ball back and attempting to overwhelm their opponents with the sheer intensity of their attacking.
What do you think? Feel free to leave a comment.
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