MANCHESTER CITY VS. LIVERPOOL
| Sunday, November 8th |
Premier League | Etihad Stadium
4:30PM GMT/11:30AM EST
The Reds will be without Virgil van Dijk, Thiago Alcantara, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, and Fabinho. Meanwhile, City will welcome Liverpool without Sergio Aguero, Benjamin Mendy, and Fernandinho.
One person who should be ready for action is Liverpool’s newest goal machine, Diogo Jota. The Champions League hat trick hero received a knock against Atalanta, but will be ready for action on Sunday. However, expect that Jota will come on as a substitute for Roberto Firmino to claim his obligatory goal.
Both teams are coming off of impressive Champions League wins and will look to roll that into Premier League momentum. Liverpool have had unfortunate luck at the Etihad recently. They’ve only scored one goal and lost their last three matches there. They’ve also only managed to keep one clean sheet in the league so far, despite not conceding in their three Champions League matches.
Gabriel Jesus is fit, and so he will probably replace Ferran Torres to start in the attack.
City will no doubt look to capitalize on Liverpool’s thin defense, so whomever Klopp picks to start beside Joe Gomez will have their work cut out for them. Against West Ham last weekend, Klopp chose Nathaniel Phillips, while Rhys Williams got the call when the team traveled to Italy to take on Atalanta. Joël Matip has returned, and if he’s match fit, then he’s likely to be the automatic choice.
Meanwhile, Sadio Mané and Mohamed Salah were back to their vintage best midweek. If they stay at that level, aided by either the intelligence of Firmino or the power of Jota, Liverpool could turn their bad Etihad luck around on Sunday.
Projected Liverpool Lineup (4-3-3)
Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Matip, Gomez, Robertson; Henderson, Wijnaldum, Keïta; Salah, Firmino, Mané
Do we see a 4-2-3-1 with Jota and Firmino both playing? Has Jota made himself undroppable after the unbelievable performance against Atalanta? Unclear, but the most likely scenario is that Klopp will go with the reliability of Firmino on Sunday.
Guardiola has his own attacking choices to make, with new guy Torres doing well for the Citizens, but Jesus returning.
What the Managers Had to Say
Jürgen Klopp: “It’s a very difficult game, hopefully for both teams. Both teams will perform at a high level. So many things are different this year. [There is] nothing to compare with last year, nothing to compare with the year before.”
Pep Guardiola: “It is always nice to play against the strongest teams possible. Last year they were stronger. They have been an exceptional team for a long time, with an exceptional manager. It is nice to face them to improve our level.”
Referee: Craig Pawson. Assistants: Lee Betts, Richard West. Fourth official: Andre Marriner. VAR: Paul Tierney. Assistant VAR: Stephen Child.
Kickoff is set for 4:30PM GMT/11:30AM EST tomorrow, and television listings for the match can be found on LiveSoccerTV. In the meantime, 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 the discussion, sign up for an SB Nation account to have your say on the action as it happens.