Two games are scheduled to be played in the Premier League on Thursday evening but there can be no doubting the star attraction. Last season’s champions and pre-season favourites for three-in-a-row take on this campaign’s kings of English football. Manchester City vs Liverpool is one of the biggest attractions in the sport this year and this match will attract a worldwide audience.
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Liverpool have already wrapped up the Premier League title and will be eager to prove themselves worthy champions by beating rivals Manchester City at the Etihad. The Reds are fully deserving of their first time of the Premier League era but that won’t stop Man City trying to take them down a peg or two by spoiling their party. The visitors will get a guard of honour, but the pleasantries will cease at the whistle for kick-off.
This will be the third match involving Man City and Liverpool this season after the pair clashed in the league and Community Shield. The latter took place back in August of last year and ended in a 1-1 draw, Man City winning 5-4 on penalties. Liverpool got their revenge at Anfield in the Premier League when thumping Pep Guardiola’s men 3-1 late last year. Which of these two giants of European football will come out on top in midweek?
Man City made to pay a hefty price
Manchester City sit second in the Premier League and it has already been confirmed they will finish no higher than their current position. There will be no three Premier League titles in three years. The Cityzens head into this match with their season stats reading 20 wins and 3 draws against 8 defeats, scoring 77 goals and conceding 33. Guardiola’s men have scored seven more goals than the champions but have conceded a dozen more. They have 63 points on the board and that’s 23 points less than Liverpool. Despite being betting favourites last summer to win this season’s title they barely laid a glove on their opponents.
The home side set-up for this match having lost half of their last four league games, their recent run reading lose, win, win, lose. They headed into lockdown with a defeat at Old Trafford against derby rivals Man Utd, going down 2-0 to the Red Devils on 8 March. Their next outing was on 17 June when getting their campaign back on track with a convincing win over Arsenal at this venue, easing to a 3-0 success over Mikel Arteta’s Gunners. With confidence returning, City battered Burnley 5-0 just a few days later. They looked to be hitting their stride again, but it didn’t last.
Man City lost the title at Stamford Bridge last Thursday when suffering a 2-1 defeat. Frank Lampard’s men were good value for the points that evening, Pulisic and Willian on target to better a goal from De Bruyne early in the second half. The beaten side finished that game with 10 men after Fernandinhpo was sent off on 77 minutes as things went from bad to worse. A tough one for all connected to the Etihad club and it got much worse when Liverpool took full advantage.
Liverpool end title drought
Liverpool are top of the Premier League table and will finish the 2019/20 campaign as champions. The Reds have won the top tier of English football no less than 19 times in the past, claiming their first gong back in 1901. This season’s crown was their first success since 1990 and ends a drought that fans believe went on far too long for a club of Liverpool’s size. After adding the Premier League trophy to last season’s Champions League prize it will be interesting to see where they go from here. Will Jurgen Klopp’s men kick on and dominate English football?
Unbeaten in their last three league starts, Liverpool edged lowly Bournemouth 2-1 on 7 March before heading into lockdown. Since football resumed in the UK in June the pace setters have taken four of the six points that was available to them. They returned to draw with derby rivals Everton at Goodison Park, holding on for a 0-0 thanks to a late save from goalkeeper Allison to avoid defeat. It was a game they were expected to win but they ended up rather fortunate to get anything out of the tie. Klopp labelled his shot-stopper Allison outstanding when speaking to the press in his post-match media chat.
We saw them make a return to winning ways last time out when hammering Crystal Palace at Anfield last Wednesday. The Eagles have made themselves difficult to break down this season, but Liverpool’s free-flowing attack had no troubles. The champions won 4-0 to clinch the league title thanks to goals from Alexander-Arnold, Salah, Fabinho and Mane. It was a one-sided contest and exactly the type of performance the players would’ve hoped for to clinch the title. With the title already wrapped up will the squad have the focus to keep chasing wins? Beating Man City on their own patch is exactly the way to celebrate.
Man City vs Liverpool prediction
This match could mean more to Man City than Liverpool as they are at home and still must earn their silver medal. The club have a difficult few months ahead as they plan their route down the road to recovery and beating Liverpool could be the perfect way to get things moving.
Both teams have scored in each of the last three games involving Man City and Liverpool and neutrals will hope this renewal falls into line and gives us a goal-fest. With the title decided, these teams can, perhaps, let their guard down a little, gamble and go on the attack. Man City are never shy in going forward on their own patch, as record shows.
Premier League odds
Man City are slight odds favourites in the betting market and backers will find them at 21/20 in the match-winner probability. Liverpool can be backed for an away win at 23/10 or there’s 57/20 up for grabs to those who fancy the draw.