Match preview: United v Liverpool
Attentions will swiftly turn towards match-day mode once again as Manchester United face Liverpool in the Premier League on Thursday.
The rearranged fixture will come just over 48 hours after the Reds’ defeat to Leicester City on Tuesday, a game Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side will be hoping to bounce back from when Jurgen Klopp’s team are the visitors to Old Trafford.
Having secured a Champions League spot for next season earlier in the week, United could also all but confirm a second-placed finish for the first time since the 2017/18 campaign, with all three points against our rivals from Merseyside.
So, here’s everything you need to know ahead of the game...
Ole’s press conference to preview Liverpool (H)Video
HOW CAN I FOLLOW THE MATCH?
The game kicks off at 20:15 BST and will be broadcast live in the UK on Sky Sports. You can also follow proceedings from Old Trafford via ManUtd.com and our Official App where you will be able to track live in-game data through our Match Centre. MUTV will also be providing pre-match build-up, live radio commentary and post-match reaction, as well as full reruns of the game the following day.
With Thursday’s game set to be United’s fourth outing in the space of eight days, Solskjaer is once again expected to make plenty of changes, having made 10 alterations to his starting XI against Leicester City earlier in the week. There could be returns for most of the players who started the victory at Aston Villa at the weekend, the majority of whom were named on the bench against the Foxes on Tuesday, while captain Harry Maguire is out, having picked up an ankle injury during that win at Villa Park. Daniel James has been missing from the last three matchday squads due to injury while Anthony Martial and Phil Jones have been longer-term absentees.
As for the visitors, Naby Keita, Ozan Kabak, Ben Davies and James Milner all missed the victory over Southampton last time out due to minor injury concerns, with Jurgen Klopp expecting none of his absentees to return. Virgil van Dijk, Joel Matip, Joe Gomez and Jordan Henderson are all out for the season but Divock Origi is getting close to a comeback.
United will be hoping to bounce back from a first defeat in the Premier League since January. The Reds had gone 14 matches unbeaten in the league before Tuesday’s loss to the Foxes, a run that could see Solskjaer’s side solidify a second-place finish with all three points against Liverpool. The visitors have put together some form themselves in recent weeks and are without a defeat in six in the Premier League. Klopp’s side will be looking to carry their recent momentum into the encounter in M16 as they continue to chase Champions League football for next season, currently occupying sixth position, seven points behind Chelsea in fourth with four games left to play.
ONE TO WATCH
Mohamed Salah leads the team’s and the division’s goalscoring charts this season. The Egyptian forward hit the 20-goal mark in the league for the third time in his four seasons at Anfield during the recent draw with Newcastle United and has struck 29 times in all competitions for his club so far this season. Ahead of the game at Old Trafford, Salah is second in the race for this season’s Premier League Golden Boot, one behind Tottenham Hotspur’s Harry Kane (21). He scored both goals in the Anfield outfit's 3-2 Emirates FA Cup defeat at the Theatre of Dreams earlier this term.
The clubs together boast a combined 39 Premier League/First Division titles, 19 FA Cups and nine Champions League/European Cup trophies. The shared success on the pitch over the late 20th century in particular, has heightened the fierce rivalry between the clubs.
United lead the all-time record between the two sides, winning 81 times to Liverpool’s 67, with the teams being equally matched on the other 58 occasions. Solskjaer and Klopp, however, have only faced each other five times as managers; both have one win each, with the other three games ending as draws. In our last meeting, United won 3-2 in this season’s FA Cup fourth round, with Mason Greenwood, Marcus Rashford and Bruno Fernandes securing the bragging rights.
Highlights: United 3 Liverpool 2Video
Referee: Anthony Taylor.
Assistants: Gary Beswick, Adam Nunn.
Fourth official: David Coote.
VAR: Paul Tierney.
Assistant VAR: Timothy Wood.