AUTHOR: Star Sports Content

STAR PREVIEW Sun: Man City v Liverpool

It’s early days in one of the more unpredictable seasons of recent times, but there’s a feeling that Manchester City and Liverpool’s meeting will go a long way to deciding who wins the title.

We’ve seen vulnerability from both sides early on but there’s no doubting they’ve found their form – City have won six and drawn two of their last eight matches since their 5-2 thumping at the hands of Leicester, while the visitors have claimed five wins and a draw since their extraordinary defeat (7-2, if you needed reminding) at the hands of Aston Villa.

City have gained success through tightening things up at the back, with three straight clean sheets in just over a week since a 1-1 draw against West Ham. They have done well to cope with the lack of a pure striker, so the return of Gabriel Jesus with a goal against Olympiakos in midweek is most welcome whilst Ferran Torres looks to have hit his stride with goals in all three of City’s Champions League group games.

Man City v Liverpool
Premier League 16:30
Sky Sports Main Event / Sky Sports Premier League / Sky Sports Ultra HD

(Maximum 10 matches, since 2010)
JUL 2020 PREMIER LEAGUE Manchester City 4-0 Liverpool
NOV 2019 PREMIER LEAGUE Liverpool 3-1 Manchester City
AUG 2019 COMMUNITY SHIELD Liverpool 1-1 Manchester City
JAN 2019 PREMIER LEAGUE Manchester City 2-1 Liverpool
OCT 2018 PREMIER LEAGUE Liverpool 0-0 Manchester City
APR 2018 CHAMPIONS LEAGUE Manchester City 1-2 Liverpool
APR 2018 CHAMPIONS LEAGUE Liverpool 3-0 Manchester City
JAN 2018 PREMIER LEAGUE Liverpool 4-3 Manchester City
SEP 2017 PREMIER LEAGUE Manchester City 5-0 Liverpool
MAR 2017 PREMIER LEAGUE Manchester City 1-1 Liverpool

For Liverpool, the situation can be reversed. Jurgen Klopp’s side are in a rich vein of form going forward, with new signing Digo Jota proving to be a revelation. The Portuguese’s extraordinary star to life at Anfield continued with a hat-trick against Atalanta in a 5-0 Champions League win, and his dynamism and movement has added a new dimension to one of the world’s elite attacking line-ups of Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane.

However defensive concerns must be top of the agenda. Joel Matip is expected to recovery from his recent injury to partner Joe Gomez at centre-back but they are the only two senior centre backs and at some point the season long absence of Virgil van Dijk can be expected to bite.

Both sides have found the winning touch lately, although Liverpool have arguably been more fluent in attack – perhaps no surprise with the influence of Jota in the side added to their fully fit attacking lineup – but City’s tightening up at the back can’t be underestimated and neither can the return of Gabriel Jesus to their lineup.

On paper not much separates these teams and July’s 4-0 victory for Manchester City over a Liverpool side that had just taken the title feels like an aberration. A draw isn’t a common result between the pair but it looks overpriced at 14/5 given how both teams are balanced.

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