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Is Liverpool v Manchester City a Potential Title Showdown This Weekend?

October 3, 2018

This weekend sees one of the biggest matches in the Premier League title race, even though we are only seven games into the season. Two teams have started the season with the same 6 wins and 1 draw record from their seven games and both sit in the first two places in the Premier League.

Top side Manchester City will take their enviable record to Anfield this Sunday where they will face a Liverpool side who have been touted as genuine title contenders this season after an impressive start to the season. Many pundits are already predicting that the title race will be between these two teams (although unbeaten Chelsea in third may well feel they also have a say in the matter) and as such, this gives Sunday’s clash at Anfield added importance.

We’re going to give you a full preview of this massive clash on Sunday, looking at both teams, their record this season, their historic performances in this fixture in recent times as well as our tips on what we think are the best bets for this weekend’s game.

So let’s begin with a look back at the history of Liverpool v Manchester City

Liverpool v Man City – Head to Head

The teams have met a total of 210 times throughout their history with the first match between Ardwick United (the former name of Manchester City) and Liverpool back in September 1893. Liverpool won all but one of the opening ten games between the teams ( a 1-1 draw in April 1896) before Manchester City’s first win which came in October 1903.

Over history the game has produced the following results:

  • Liverpool wins – 104
  • Manchester City wins – 54
  • Drawn matches – 52

All of Manchester City’s most recent wins over Liverpool have been at their own Etihad Stadium, bar the win on penalties in the 2016 League Cup Final at Wembley, which came following a 1-1 draw in normal time. Indeed, Manchester City’s last win at Anfield came 15 years ago when two late goals from Nicolas Anelka handed City a 2-1 win in May 2003.

Since then though City have a dismal record at Anfield. In the 17 games since then, City have managed just five draws, losing the other 12 games. Last season, despite beating Liverpool 5-0 at the Etihad in September, in a game that saw the Reds reduced to 10-men due to Sadio Mane’s sending off in the first half, City lost their next three games against the Reds, 4-3 at Anfield in the corresponding game to this weekend’s fixture and then two defeats in the Champions League quarterfinals 3-0 at Anfield and then a 2-1 reverse at the Etihad.

Record over the last 10 games between the teams

  • Liverpool Wins – 7
  • Man City Wins – 2
  • Draws – 1
  • Liverpool Goals Scored – 21
  • Man City Goals Scored – 13

Liverpool Performances This Season (Premier League)

  • V West Ham (H) – W 4-0 (Salah, Mane 2, Sturridge)
  • V Crystal Palace (A) – W 2-0 (Milner, Mane)
  • V Brighton (H) – W 1-0 (Salah)
  • V Leicester City (A) – W 2-1 (Mane, Firmino)
  • V Tottenham (A) – W 2-1 (Wijnaldum, Firmino)
  • V Southampton (H) – W 3-0 (Own Goal, Matip, Salah)
  • V Chelsea (A) – D 1-1 (Sturridge)

Man City Performances This Season (Premier League)

  • V Arsenal (A) – W 2-0 (Sterling, B.Silva)
  • V Huddersfield (H) – W 6-1 (Aguero 3, Jesus, D.Silva, Own Goal)
  • V Wolves (A) – D 1-1 (Laporte)
  • V Newcastle (H) – W 2-1 (Sterling, Walker)
  • V Fulham (H) – W 3-0 (Sane, D.Silva, Sterling)
  • V Cardiff C (A) – W 5-0 (Aguero, B.Silva, Gundogan, Mahrez 2)
  • V Brighton (H) – W 2-0 (Sterling, Aguero)

Both teams have tasted defeat this season in other competitions. Liverpool were beaten 2-1 by Chelsea in the Carabao Cup, although the Reds team that night was comprised mainly of players on the fringes of the squad. Manchester City lost 2-1 in the Champions League at home to Lyon on the opening round of fixtures when Pep Guardiola served his touchline ban for being sent to the stands against Liverpool in the quarterfinals last season.

Probable Teams

Liverpool – 4-3-3 – Alisson, Alexander Arnold, Robertson, Van Dijk, Gomez, Wijnaldum, Milner, Henderson, Salah, Mane, Firmino

The Reds tend to go with a more defensive outlook in midfield against stronger teams, hence Henderson in the team ahead of Keita, who I expect to be used from the bench along with Sturridge and Shaqiri should the Reds require them at any point in the game.

Manchester City – 4-3-3- Ederson, Walker, Kompany, Otamendi, Laporte, Fernandinho, D.Silva, B.Silva, Sterling, Sane, Aguero

City’s big problem area is left back where Laporte filled in against Hoffenhem in midweek with Mendy out of favour and Delph injured. Mahrez could come in for Bernardo Silva while Kevin de Bruyne could be fit enough for a place on the bench after missing the season so far with a knee injury.

Our Top Tips for Liverpool v Manchester City

Full Time Result – Liverpool to win 11/8

Historically City have a poor record against Liverpool and they will feel that the Reds are their bogey team given their recent record against them. Anfield is always a tough place to go but against City the atmosphere is always at fever pitch. Liverpool thrive in such games and while City are no shrinking violets, I think that the Reds style of play and dangerous front three will do just enough to grab them the win here.

Correct Score – Liverpool 2-1 Manchester City (10/1)

Games between these teams do tend to produce goals and plenty of them. The four matches last season produced an incredible 18 goals, shared equally between the teams over four games. At Anfield last time out, the game ended 4-3 but City were flattered by two late goals. This game will see defences more on top I feel and while I do see both teams scoring, I think the Reds clinch this 2-1.

Anytime Goalscorer – James Milner (Liverpool) 4/1

I’ve gone for Milner ahead of the front three for the Reds for one simple reason and that is that he is the home side’s penalty taker. Given the dangers posed by the Reds front three, especially against a player likely to be playing out of position at left back, I think the Reds will want to isolate that player as often as possible and get them backing into the box and I think that is a likely route to a penalty for the home side. If so, I’d expect Milner to despatch it.

Timecast – Sadio Mane to Score first and first goal to be between 21 minutes and half time – 18/1

Sadio Mane is always involved in these games playing a big role in both wins at Anfield last season and he was also sent off at the Etihad in City’s 5-0 win (in which that sending off played a key part). He’s been a little out of sorts the past couple of weeks but I expect him to be firing on all cylinders here and his runs beyond the back line will cause City problems and I feel likely be the source of the opening goal.

About Ian John

Ian John
Working my way though the UK's top online poker sites (and some of the ones near the bottom as well) to bring you a first-hand take on the absolute best choices for online poker players from the UK.