Manchester United vs Liverpool

One of the most heavily awaited match-ups in the Premier League calendar pits arch-rivals Manchester United and Liverpool against each other at Old Trafford.

Manchester United’s quest to secure Champions League qualification took a potentially fatal blow in midweek as Cole Palmer’s double between the 99th and 101st minute inspired Chelsea to a 4-3 win. Back-to-back winless league outings (D1, L1) see Man Utd start this round nine points adrift of fifth-placed Tottenham, highlighting the importance of beating Liverpool for the second time in a month. Erik ten Hag’s team eked out a 4-3 extra-time win in last month’s FA Cup quarter-finals, ending a two-game scoring drought in this fixture. United’s woeful defending at Stamford Bridge contributed to the Red Devils’ disastrous record of conceding more shots than any other side across Europe’s top-five leagues in 2024. They allowed Liverpool 34 attempts in December’s reverse fixture but unfathomably got away with a goalless draw.

On the other hand, Liverpool maintained their title dream alive with a hard-earned 3-1 home triumph against rock-bottom Sheffield United in midweek Premier League action, protecting a two-point lead on closest followers Arsenal and Manchester City ahead of this round. However, Liverpool’s title credentials are about to face a stern test as the Reds have only won two of their last 12 visits to Old Trafford (D4, L6). Except for a famous 7-0 drubbing at Anfield, they’ve gone winless in all three remaining games against United under Ten Hag (D1, L2). Conceding first wouldn’t necessarily lead to the extension of their form wobble in this contest, considering the Merseysiders have rescued a league-high 26 points from losing positions this season.

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