Liverpool have been turning their fortunes around this season, going from some poor dips in form and subpar performances to claiming second place in the Premier League title race. A victory over Manchester City will ensure a spot at the top of the division, so read on to see our expectations for the match and Liverpool’s predicted lineup.
Liverpool and Manchester City’s Form So Far
Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool, in spite of losing only once this season, have had some bizarre and complex performances throughout. A dominant performance against Luton Town became a draw due to some suboptimal finishing, some excellent shooting from Toulouse led to a loss in the Europa League, yet a fairly even match with Brentford became a 3-0 thrashing in favour of the Reds. It seems there are two versions of Liverpool that can show up this season with relatively little middle ground.
Manchester City have been their usual selves, holding the majority of possession in every single match this season. However, they have had a few weaknesses, losing three times in eleven days at the end of September. Although they’ve been excellent at the top, scoring at least three in every game since Brighton, there are some vulnerabilities to exploit.
Man City Tactical Preview
There is a clear trend in every match that Pep Guardiola’s side have lost this season. In each match their opponents (Newcastle, Wolves and Arsenal) actively looked to grind the Cityzens down, stodging up the midfield and preventing any real threat from emerging. In every single one of these games City’s xG didn’t go beyond one. The best way to stop Haaland is to prevent him from having any chances in the first place. Although this doesn’t necessarily suit Jurgen Klopp’s style, it’s definitely a workable approach.
Liverpool Injury Concerns
Jurgen Klopp will almost certainly go into this encounter frustrated with his list of injuries. Overpowering City in midfield is, of course, quite difficult when all of your midfielders are sidelined. Stefan Bajcetic, Thiago, Curtis Jones and Ryan Gravenberch will all be in doubt, with Alexis Mac Allister’s return only bringing some comfort.
Whilst Joe Gomez and Ibrahima Konate both missed out against Brentford, they should be available for the match against Manchester City. Andrew Robertson, on the other hand, will miss out until the New Year.
Liverpool Predicted Lineup vs Manchester City
Alisson is the obvious candidate to start in goal for this match, with Virgil van Dijk and Joel Matip sitting in front of him. Konate would be a candidate for the second centre-back spot, but being an injury doubt means that Klopp likely wants a fully fit side to take on the league leaders. Trent Alexander-Arnold and Kostas Tsimikas start in the full-back positions.
A somewhat ramshackle midfield starts with Wataru Endo playing as a six alongside Dominic Szoboszlai and Cody Gakpo, both looking to create plenty of chances against their rivals. Mohamed Salah starts out on the right, looking to contribute to his impressive goal tally this season so far, with Diogo Jota on the other flank. Darwin Nunez up front will be looking to put his finishing woes behind him.
Manchester City vs Liverpool Predictions and Odds
Guardiola vs Klopp is always a colossal affair, with both sides looking to dominate possession and force chance after chance to score goals. The away side has only won three of the last twenty-two clashes between these clubs, so the Manchester crowd is likely to get behind the Sky Blues and push them across the line to secure a victory. Expect plenty of goals and even more chances, with the winner of this fixture being firmly in the title race’s driving seat.
Man City are currently clear favorites with odds of 4/6 with the major U.S. gambling apps such as betMGM and bet365, as Liverpool come in as fairly distant outsiders with odds of 4/1. However, as we’ve learned from this fixture in recent years, anything can happen when these two giants of the game clash.