As Erik ten Hag’s team travels to Anfield on Sunday, Liverpool, riding high as Premier League leaders and participants in the Europa League knockout stage, catches rivals Manchester United at a low point.
United is under pressure after losing to Bayern Munich 1-0 in the middle of the week, which eliminated them from the Champions League. Since 2005, this is the first time they have been removed from continental action in this manner.
Conversely, Liverpool leads the fiercely competitive Premier League standings by one point above everyone else, with Arsenal trailing closely after, Aston Villa trailing the Gunners by just one point in third, and Manchester City still posing a danger in fourth.
The last time these two played at this location, United lost 7-0, and United will be aiming for revenge after Darwin Nunez, Mohamed Salah, and Cody Gakpo all scored braces for the Reds in their overwhelming triumph.
The Reds have relished creating obstacles for themselves this season, but they are still among the best teams in the league, largely because of a midfield makeover this past summer.
It’s hard to support Manchester United to win this early given their humiliation in the Champions League, and even if their lack of fixtures may work in their favor later on due to injuries and bad form, there’s nothing to suggest a turnaround just yet.
Given that Fernandes is suspended and Mason Mount is probably still out, Hannibal Mejbri will have the best opportunity to excel in the creative department. Although the young Manchester United player has gradually gained attention this season, he has yet to accumulate many Premier League minutes.
Ten Hag will have to tread lightly throughout the game, though, as he is forced to use the 20-year-old in midfield despite his lack of discipline in the past. Throughout 409 minutes in all competitions this year, he has been booked three times. Since Liverpool will probably want to counter quickly, he might be a prominent target to block transitional moves.