MANCHESTER CITY VS. LIVERPOOL
| Saturday, November 24th |
Premier League | The Etihad
12:30PM GMT/7:30AM EST
In news that will shock no one, Erling Håland has returned to fitness ahead of this weekend’s class, and the other rumored “knocks” — to Ederson and Nathan Aké — will require late fitness tests, but we can assume the duo are fit. Mateo Kovačić, Sergio Gómez and Matheus Nunes are doubts, while Kevin de Bruyne and John Stones remain out. Håland is looking for his 50th Premier League goal this season (in 47 games), but has yet to score a league goal against the Reds.
Should Manchester City win at the Etihad this Saturday, it would be the first time the side has won two consecutive league games against Liverpool since a sequence in 1934-37 wherein they won four straight; last time out City won 4-1 at home.
Though Håland gets the headlines, Julián Álvarez is also having a productive season in front of goal, especially at home: he has cored 17 in his 18 home starts in all competitions this season.
Predicted Liverpool Lineup (4-3-3)
Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Konaté, Van Dijk, Tsimikas; Szoboszlai, Mac Allister, Jones; Salah, Jota, Díaz
Once again the Reds play at 12:30 following an international break, which seems to be Jürgen Klopp’s own personal curse; how the starting time will impac this clash of heavyweights remains to be seen.
Liverpool come into Saturday’s match healthier than in past weeks, with Joe Gomez, Ryan Gravenberch, Curtis Jones, and Ibrahima Konaté all having trained for the Reds. Those with long-term injuries — Stefan Bajcetic, Thiago, and Andy Robertson — remain sidelined. Alexis Mac Allister returns to the team after serving a ban.
Connor Bradley has returned to training, but will need games with the U21s before returning for minutes with the senior side. Kaide Gordon has trained with the first team, which Jürgen Klopp described as something “really exciting. Looks really good, has to now gain minutes.”
The Reds have not won away at City since Klopp’s first season in charge back in November 2015, predating Pep Guardiola’s time at the club — though the Reds have won at the Etihad in the Champions league in 2018, a 2-1 second leg victory that saw the Reds through to the semi-final on a 5-1 aggregate score.
Liverpool have struggled away this season, failing to win in all three of their last aways and further failing to keep a clean sheet in any of their seven road fixtures, conceding 12 goals. This season the Reds have conceded just 10 league goals, however: the joint-lowest, level with Arsenal.
Should Mohamed Salah score, he will reach the marker of 150 Premier League goals; should he manage two, he’ll reach 200 goals for Liverpool in all competitions. Salah has scored 11 goals against City in 18 appearances, all competitions; only Ian Rush has scored more against them (15). As we know, the Egyptian loves his little records. Should Diogo Jota score he will reach 50 goals for Liverpool.
What the Managers Had to Say
Jurgen Klopp: “Saturday is a big one against the strongest team in the world. Whatever happened last year, two years ago, three years ago, is just a memory. If we can be really uncomfortable for them, then we have a chance. If they feel comfortable in their game, then no team will get beat there.”
Pep Guardiola: “Absolutely, [Jürgen Klopp] made me better, part of when you are many years in this business, him and his teams, here and Borussia Dortmund always been big rivals, good games for both, positive approach and always attractive. He made me a better manager through his teams, and of course the way we play is good with the transitions, the runs, they are a fantastic team, a top side, no doubt.”
Referee: Chris Kavanagh Assistants: Simon Bennett, Dan Robathan Fourth Official: Thomas Bramall VAR: Stuart Attwell Assistant VAR: Tim Wood
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