Manchester City will face Liverpool for a heavyweight clash at Etihad Stadium in the Premier League on Sunday, 8 November 2020.
Manchester City Betting Preview
Pep Guardiola’s side were polite and well mannered to organize Liverpool a guard of honor when the two sides last met in early July but then City showed their real intention on the pitch to inflict a 4-0 defeat on the newly crowned champions of England.
City will be looking to extend their fabulous home form in the Premier League against the Reds as they enjoy a three-game winning streak over the Merseysiders at the Etihad and it seems they are strongly favored to claim another one on Sunday.
Unbeaten in 8 games across all competitions (winning six of them), since a 5-2 home defeat to Leicester City on 27 September, The Sky Blues returned to winning ways in the Premier League with a 1-0 victory at Sheffield United.
Kyle Walker marked his 100th League appearance for City with a goal against his hometown club as Pep Guardiola’s side edged past a struggling Sheffield United side last weekend.
Also, after he played a starring role in the 3-0 victory over Olympique Marseille in the Champions League last week, Walker was described by Pep Guardiola as being in the best form of his Manchester City career.
Pep Guardiola has issued an update on Man City’s all-time leading goal scorer Sergio Aguero as the 32-year-old Argentinian suffered another setback and hasn’t featured since a 1-1 draw at West Ham United a fortnight ago, when he was withdrawn at the break with a muscular injury.
If we assume that Gabriel Jesus and Raheem Sterling are set to start in City’s attacking trident on Sunday, the likes of Phil Foden, Riyad Mahrez, Bernardo Silva and Ferran Torres are all competing for the third spot in Pep Guardiola’s attacking trio.
Torres, who scored three goals (all of them in the Champions League) in his last four games for City failed to impress at Sheffield United last weekend and could possibly make way for either Phil Foden or Riyad Mahrez here.
Even though he’s yet to score since a 3-1 win at Wolves on 21 September, Kevin De Bruyne could boast five assists to his name in his last three appearances.
Both key defenders Aymeric Laporte and Ruben Dias were rested in midweek and they will likely be recalled to the starting XI here. Back from injury, Nathan Ake could also challenge Joao Cancelo at left-back.
Veteran Fernandinho and Benjamin Mendy are also injured for the home side, but Guardiola is not short on options at their positions right now.
Liverpool Betting Preview
The Reds have shown resilience to reignite their winning form and to recover from the humiliating 7-2 loss at Aston Villa prior to the October break. They have first denied a stoppage-time winner to beat Merseyside rivals Everton on 17 October, in a spectacular 2-2 draw that will mostly be remembered with Virgil van Dijk’s injury, and are now enjoying a five-game winning streak across all competitions.
Jurgen Klopp’s side had a memorable night at Bergamo in midweek when Diogo Jota continued his superb form as he scored his first hat-trick for the Merseyside outfit and will very likely get another start here. The Portuguese attacker has now scored in each of Liverpool’s last four games, including the comeback winners for the back-to-back home wins against Sheffield United and West Ham United.
However, Liverpool’s boss could be tempted to start both Jota and Firmino in attack and there is a good chance he could be willing to stick with the 4-2-3-1 formation that proved to be efficient over the past couple of weeks.
With Thiago Alcantara not fully fit, we could easily see Jurgen Klopp opting for a 4-2-3-1 system with both Jota and Bobby Firmino in the side.
Meanwhile, Liverpool have significantly improved their defensive form over the past couple of weeks when Klopp rotated the likes of Fabinho, Nathaniel Phillips and Rhys Williams alongside Joe Gomez, with Joel Matip and Virgil van Dijk both unavailable.
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain remains sidelined as he suffered another injury setback in Liverpool’s pre-season and is still not clear when the England midfielder will be back.
Nathaniel Phillips was surprisingly introduced into Liverpool’s defense against West Ham on Sunday and he impressed to put in a Man of the Match performance. However, Klopp now reportedly has Joel Matip available and it remains to be seen whether he would opt for a center-back pair of Joe Gomez and Matip or he’ll stick with the formation (either Rhys Williams or Nathaniel Phillips starting alongside Gomez) that forged the victories over FC Midtjylland, West Ham and Atalanta.
Days before his 30th anniversary, Georginio Wijnaldum could be given another start alongside captain Jordan Henderson in central midfield as the experienced Dutchman starts to improve his form after a slow start to the season amid rumors for a possible transfer to Barcelona.
Curtis Jones started in the last two games and the teenager could once again be an option to feature should Klopp opts for a 4-3-3 formation.
Whereas it has been revealed that Fabinho should recover from a hamstring strain in time to return after the looming international break and possibly be fully fit for the clash against Brendan Rodgers’ Leicester City at Anfield, Virgil van Dijk is months away from his full recovery and the influential Dutchman could be ruled out for the remainder of the season with a lot of uncertainty around his condition and perhaps his presence at the European Championship.
Virgil Van Dijk has been a foundation of Liverpool’s transformation and arguably the heart of success over the past years, barely missing a minute of football when Jurgen Klopp’s selection won the Champions League and then ended the three decades of waiting to triumph in the English top-flight.
Possible Starting Lineups of Manchester City and Liverpool
Manchester City: Ederson – João Cancelo, Aymeric Laporte, Ruben Dias, Kyle Walker – İlkay Gündoğan, Rodri, Kevin De Bruyne – Raheem Sterling, Gabriel Jesus, Ferran Torres. (4-3-3)
Liverpool: Alisson – Andy Robertson, Joel Matip, Joe Gomez, Trent Alexander-Arnold – Georginio Wijnaldum, Jordan Henderson – Diogo Jota, Roberto Firmino, Sadio Mane – Mohamed Salah. (4-2-3-1)
Spooky Express Betting Prediction
Unlike twelve months ago, when Klopp got the better of Pep Guardiola and Liverpool triumphed 3-1 at Anfield, Guardiola seems to be the manager whose tremendous squad depth seems to be more unaffected at the moment. Moreover, Van Dijk’s absence comes as a huge boost to City and their hopes of dethroning Liverpool.
With that said, Pep Guardiola’s side are +105 favorites to claim another victory against a Liverpool side that seems to be defensively improved, yet Man City’s attacking formation would be a completely different challenge to their current ability.
Liverpool’s chances, on the other hand, are rated at +230 with BetOnline, while a draw between the two main contenders can be backed at +260.
There were Under 2.5 Goals scored in each of City’s last four Premier League games, indeed, but this time we have all reasons to believe that both attacks have the undeniable quality to deliver so we expect to see goals at the Etihad on Sunday.
Spooky Express Free Parlay
Both teams to score – Yes
Total Goals Over 3.5
+124 @ BetOnline for 5/10 Units