The Premier League returns after the break with a classic fixture

Last updated: October 12, 2017 by Leon Marshal

Game details

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Kick-off: Saturday, 12:30pm
Venue: Anfield
Coverage: Sky Sports
Home Team Form: WLDWD
Away Team Form: WDWWW
Last Meeting: Man U 1 – 1 Liverpool
Competition: Premier League

After a pretty tedious weekend of international football, resulting in two 1-0 victories for England courtesy of Harry Kane, the Premier League is finally back. Kicking off the proceedings is a much anticipated game between Liverpool and Manchester United, with the result all but guaranteed to go to The Red Devils.

The Northern Powerhouse is back, and in a big way, with neither of the Mancunian teams yet to register a loss. This is great for Manchester, but frankly terrifying for everyone else. If both teams manage to win this weekend, then perhaps we can already start calling this league a two-horse race. One particularly frightening omen is Mourinho’s penchant for always winning in his second season with every single club he has managed since 2002. He did it with Chelsea (twice), Inter Milan, Porto and Real Madrid. It doesn’t seem likely that Liverpool will stand in his way on Saturday.

Klopp has his work cut out for him to deliver a surprise result here. Liverpool like to play high-pressing, fast-paced, attacking football, but as their disastrous outing against City showed, it can go terribly wrong. Its not that they don’t have great players in the form of Salah (four goals in seven) and Mane (three goals in five) – it’s simply that Manchester United have an even better attacking presence with little of the same dodginess in defence. Remarkably, they’ve only conceded two goals all season! Their star player is the superlative Romelu Lukaku, already racking up seven goals in seven games. With Nemanja Matic the glue that ties the team together in the middle, United should have no problem bossing the game from the start.

Yet there may be a way around this extremely capable Man United team. As their 2-2 draw against Stoke showed, defending well, sitting deep and going for goals on the counter-attack and set-pieces could be a way to get on the scoresheet. But this is Liverpool we are talking about – and if they try and take the game to Manchester United, expect them to be comfortably beaten.

Team News

In a huge blow for Liverpool, Mane won’t be at the game this weekend. He suffered a hamstring injury while on international duty.

Mourinho has told his players to be wary of Salah this weekend, stating that: “I’m not surprised with Salah’s performance this season. I was aware of his great capabilities when he was with me at Chelsea”.

The North-West derby is one of the most popular games in the footballing calendar – this will be the 199th time these teams have faced each other.

Emre Can has admitted to Liverpool’s recent failings, stating that: “I’ve read a stat which shows that we had 120 shots in the past seven matches, and we only scored seven goals. That’s clearly not enough”.

Expected Line-Ups:

Liverpool (4-3-3): Mignolet; Gomez, Matip, Klavan, Moreno; Wijnaldum, Henderson, Coutinho; Salah, Sturridge, Oxlade-Chamberlain
Subs: Karius, Milner, Firmino, Can, Ward, Solanke, Sturridge
Injured: Mane, Lovren, Lallana, Clyne, Bogdan
Not available:
Manchester United (4-3-3): De Gea; Valencia, Bailly, Jones, Darmian; Herrera, Matic, Martial; Mkhitaryan, Lukaku, Rashford
Subs: Romero, Lingard, Lindelof Smalling, Mata, Blind, Young
Injured: Fellaini, Pogba, Ibrahimovic, Rojo
Doubtful: Jones, Carrick
Not available:

So Far This Season

. . .
Liverpool So Far This Season Manchester United So Far This Season
7th League Position 2nd
3 (1) Wins (away) 6 (2)
4 – 0 vs. Arsenal Biggest Win 4 – 0 vs. Everton
3 (2) Draws (away) 1 (1)
0 – 5 vs Man City Biggest Defeat
Mohamed Salah (4) Top Goal Scorer Romelu Lukaku (7)
Y13, R1 Discipline Y9, R0
1 Failures to Score 0
2 Clean Sheets 6
57% Both Teams to Score Games 14%
57% Over 2.5 Goals 71%
43% Under 2.5 Goals 29%
  • Perhaps it is unwise to go for both teams to score this weekend, seeming as this has only occurred in 14% of Manchester United games this season
  • Liverpool have managed to be in games featuring over 2.5 goals 57% of the time. Is there another goal-fest on the cards this weekend?
  • Lukaku is United’s top goal scorer with 7 in 7, giving him a goals per game ratio of exactly 1.
  • Both of the goals Manchester United have conceded have been against Stoke. Prior to that they had a perfect clean sheet record.

Head to Head

Last Five Competitive Meetings Between The Sides
Date Game Result Round First Goal-scorer
15/01/2017 Manchester United 1 – 1 Liverpool Premier League Milner 27′ (pen)
17/10/2016 Liverpool 0 – 0 Manchester United Premier League
17/03/2016 Manchester United 1 – 1 Liverpool UEFA Europa League Martial 32′ (pen)
10/03/2016 Liverpool 2 – 0 Manchester United UEFA Europa League Sturridge 20′ (pen)
27/03/2015 Liverpool 0 – 1 Manchester United Premier League Rooney 78′

Conclusion & Betting Tips

Thanks to the home advantage, the odds for the game are pretty good no matter who you back, with Liverpool tipped at 17/10 and Manchester slightly ahead at 8/5 over at William Hill. This gives the potential for some seriously good combination bets to be done. United to win and Lukaku to score is a great bet at 5/2, given the Belgians’ recent record (he scored again for his country against Cyprus on Tuesday). Another thing to bear in mind is Manchester’s brilliant defensive record. Although Liverpool won’t be a walk in the park, No to both teams to score and over 2.5 goals at 10/1 seems be a great speculative result.