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Liverpool vs. Manchester United: Match Preview, Team News, and Ways to Watch

Liverpool face bitter rivals Manchester United for European glory as they battle in the first leg of the Europa League round of 16.

Alex Livesey/Getty Images

Liverpool continue their run in the Europa League with the first game of the Round of 16, and in case you somehow hadn't heard, they're facing bitter rivals Manchester United, who bombed out of the Champion's League earlier this season. Amazingly, this will be the first meeting between the two English giants in a European competition.

Manchester United have already done the double over Liverpool in the league, but neither win was particularly impressive. While Liverpool have struggled this season, ultimately sacking former manager Brendan Rodgers and bringing in Jürgen Klopp, in league play they only sit three points and one place below Manchester United and with a game in hand. Most recently, United experienced a disappointing loss to West Brom in the league after going down to 10 men while Liverpool won after going down to 10 men.

United are also in the midst of a bit of an injury crisis, and on Thursday, they'll be without Bastian Schweinsteiger, Wayne Rooney, Luke Shaw, Phil Jones, Antonio Valencia, Ashley Young, and young Cameron Borthwick-Jackson. In their absence, United youth prospect Marcus Rashford has gotten plenty of attention thanks to a pair of good displays against FC Midtjylland in the round of 32. They'll also have the likes of Juan Mata, Anthony Martial, and Memphis Depay available to them, any of whom is capable of making trouble for the Liverpool defense.

On the other hand, Liverpool are coming off two important wins in the league, including a adrenaline-pumping, last gasp penalty winner against Crystal Palace on Sunday. Notching a win at Selhurst Park, their third straight win in the league, should have Liverpool feeling confident. Adam Lallana and Roberto Firmino in particular are two players who have had an excellent few weeks. The Reds also don't have a game to think ahead to this weekend after they were eliminated from the FA Cup, while United are set to face the side that knocked them out, West Ham.

For Liverpool:

Clyne, Lovren, Sakho, Moreno
Henderson, Can
Lallana, Firmino, Coutinho

Daniel Sturridge and Nathaniel Clyne should both be available after missing out on the Crystal Palace victory. However, it could be argued that Divock Origi earned the right to retain his place after impressing. Flanagan has done well in roles on both sides of the pitch of late, but he's not registered for the Europa League. After his poor performance on Sunday, culminating in getting a red card and forcing Liverpool to battle back with only 10 men, Liverpool vice-captain James Milner could be the one to make way for the returning Philippe Coutinho.

Lucas Leiva, Kevin Stewart, Danny Ings, and Joe Gomez are all out injured for Liverpool.

Kickoff is in the late Europa League slot for this one, at 8:05PM BST/3:05PM EST, with radio coverage from LFCTV GO online for subscribers across the globe, BT Sport Europe in the UK, and Fox Sports 2 in the US. Elsewhere, it will also be showing on BeIN Sports Australia in Australia, TSN5 in Canada, TEN Action in India, Supersport 3 Africa in Kenya, and Astro Supersport in Malaysia. You can find other listings at LiveSoccerTV.

We'll be keeping you updated with all the buildup to the game, including team news as it's released, our live matchday thread and post-match recaps from The Liverpool Offside staff. If you want to join in with the matchday discussion, sign up for an SB Nation account to have your say on the game as it happens.

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