The English Premier League never goes on holiday and at the Etihad Stadium, Manchester City will host the mighty Liverpool.
At home, the ‘Citizens’ of Guardiola want to show that they have come out completely from the crisis and hit a success that would bring them back to second place in the standings, with 4 points from the top. On the other hand, the ‘Reds’ Klopp want to keep their unbeaten and consolidate their top position that would send them on the run.
— Manchester City (@ManCity) January 1, 2019
Pep Guardiola’s team had two poor games as they failed to beat Leicester City and Crystal Palace. Fortunately for the Citizens, they returned to winning ways last weekend as they had a comfortable win over Southampton. It was a positive for Manchester City that Sergio Aguero is scoring again as the Argentine striker will be vital in this match. Manchester City should also be boosted by the fact that Kevin de Bruyne looks to be back from injury. This should boost the Sky Blues greatly as the Belgian midfielder is essential for providing chances for the strikers.
Player to watch (Sergio Aguero)
— Manchester City (@ManCity) December 31, 2018
Guardiola took time to appreciate Aguero’s gifts and the Argentina striker has appeared to be second-choice behind Gabriel Jesus at times. But Aguero is now among the first names on the teamsheet for the City boss, who has got the club’s record goalscorer to buy into his pressing principles. Aguero is now not only arguably the world’s most dangerous penalty box striker, but he also performs a similar role to Roberto Firmino in leading his side’s press from the front.
Predicted starting lineup
Ederson; Walker, Stones, Laporte, Zinchenko; Bernardo, Fernandinho, Silva; Sterling, Aguero, Sane
Sadio, Mo & Bobby’s record in 2⃣0⃣1⃣8⃣…
Tremendous trio. 🙌🔴 pic.twitter.com/oWGtnvDCvG
— Liverpool FC (@LFC) December 31, 2018
Jurgen Klopp’s know that a win will almost secure the title for them as they will move 10 points ahead to Manchester City on the table. The Reds enter this game in an outstanding form after they beat Arsenal by a big margin over the weekend. Brazilian striker Roberto Firmino was in exceptional form as the Brazilian scored 3 goals while Mo Salah and Sadio Mane both scored also. The strikers looked very strong as they had 10 shots on target which is made more impressive since Liverpool were playing another top team in Arsenal. This match will be Liverpool’s biggest challenge as they are away from home and playing against the only team who match them on talent.
Player to watch (Mohamed Salah)
— LFC News Corner (@lfc_corner) December 31, 2018
It says a lot that there was the talk of Salah being a ‘one-season wonder’ after he made a slow start to 2018-19, such as his incredible form in a debut campaign for the Reds. He appeared to be troubled by the shoulder injury suffered in the Champions League final at the start of the season, but a hat-trick in a thumping win at Bournemouth showed the Egypt star is back to his best. Four goals in five subsequent December appearances have followed.
Manchester City are without a win against Liverpool in the last 5 games and managed to end a run of four straight losses, drawing last time out. Four times the matches produced over 2,5 goals and 3 times saw both sides scoring. At Etihad, the stats are no different and four of the last five meetings saw over 2,5 goals scored, with both sides finding the net also happening on 4 occasions.
Predicted starting lineup
Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Lovren, Van Dijk, Robertson; Wijnaldum, Henderson; Mane, Firmino, Keita; Salah