The Manchester City vs Liverpool Premier League match will be held this Thursday, December 26, 2013 (9:30 AM) at the Etihad Stadium. The enticing top of the table clash between Manchester City and Liverpool is the pick of the matches in the Premier League on Boxing Day.
It is no secret that Manchester City have been the most devastating Premier League side at home this season and after hammering the likes of Manchester United, Tottenham and Arsenal in such emphatic manner, teams now travel to the Etihad with fear in their hearts.
City were able to grind out a victory away to Fulham in their last Premier League outing, and Manuel Pellegrini’s men could really use an extra morale boost by defeating a strong Liverpool. However, a Luis Suarez inspired Liverpool are the visitors on Thursday and the Citizens should not be over-confident against the dangerous Reds, despite their fantastic home form.
Liverpool have surprised many with their fearless brand of football this season. Brendan Rodgers’ men are currently occupying top spot and it is by no accident that the Reds are on the summit, as they have well and truly deserved it, after some brilliant performances.
Such is their impressive displays that there have even been talks of Liverpool mounting a title challenge and a daunting trip to the Etihad will provide the perfect litmus test to figure out the Reds’ title credentials. With arguably the Premier League’s best player in their side, anything looks possible for Rodgers’ men at the moment.
Pablo Zabaleta and Mateja Nastasic are doubtful for the clash, which means that Gael Clichy looks set to continue at right back while Martin Demichelis partners Vincent Kompany at the heart of the City defense.
Joe Hart was recalled to the starting lineup against Fulham last week and the England International looks set to retain his spot between the sticks ahead of Costel Pantilimon.
Despite Sergio Aguero being ruled out, Pellegrini will most likely go with two up front with Alvaro Negredo and Edin Dzeko leading the line and the support will be provided by David Silva and Samir Nasri. Jesus Navas will also be pushing for a start after some brilliant performances recently.
The imposing duo of Yaya Toure and Fernandinho will be marshaling the midfield.
Brendan Rodgers has named an unchanged lineup in his last two matches and could do the same again against Manchester City, with the likes of Steven Gerrard and Daniel Sturridge still out with injuries.
Man of the moment Luis Suarez, will lead the line for the Reds with the magnificent Jordan Henderson supporting him in the hole. Philippe Coutinho and Raheem Sterling will probably start on the wings, while Joe Allen and Lucas look the most likely partnership in the middle of the park.
The impressive John Flanagan is a doubt for the clash with a hamstring problem and will be reassessed ahead of the game. But if the young man is deemed fit, he will continue at left-back with Martin Skrtel, Mamadou Sakho and Glen Johnson completing the defensive line for Liverpool. Simon Mignolet will start in goal.
Manchester City (Probable XI): Hart; Kolarov, Demichelis, Kompany, Clichy; Nasri, Toure, Fernandinho, Silva; Dzeko, Negredo
Liverpool (Probable XI): Mignolet; Flanagan, Sakho, Skrtel, Johnson; Coutinho, Allen, Lucas, Henderson, Sterling; Suarez
Manchester City: W W D W W
Liverpool: L W W W W
03/02/2013 Man. City 2 – 2 Liverpool
26/08/2012 Liverpool 2 – 2 Man. City
Manchester City vs Liverpool Prediction
City will head into the game confident, knowing that they have been almost flawless at home. Pellegrini’s men could be attacking from the get-go and it will be interesting to see how Liverpool cope with it.
Liverpool should not be fearing City, but the Reds should pay respect to the fact that City can tear teams in shreds at home if given the opportunity. Therefore, Rodgers should be looking to solidify the defense and try to frustrate City early on.
In Luis Suarez, the Reds posses the league’s most extraordinary talent and Rodgers will certainly hope that the Uruguayan talisman can display his magic against a leaky City defense.
Both teams have a good chance of claiming all three points and it is difficult to predict a winner. However, one thing is for sure, it will be an exciting clash between two attacking sides and lots of goals can be expected.
City do have a slightly better squad overall and their home form means that Pellegrini’s men should be able to grab a victory. Manchester City 3 – 2 Liverpool
Manchester City vs Liverpool Television
The Manchester City vs Liverpool match will be televised on NBC Sports Network and Mun2 at 9:30 AM Pacific.