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Can United stand up to the pressure against Liverpool?

Age-old rivals Liverpool and Manchester United go head-to-head on Super Sunday at Anfield, with both sides having much to prove. The hosts are looking to assert themselves under new boss Brendan Rodgers, whilst the visitors are eager to win back their Premier League title. With revelations over the Hillsborough disaster and a renewal of the race row between Patrice Evra and Luis Suarez in the thoughts ahead of the game, this is set to be an explosive encounter.

The majority of the Liverpool players are expected to be fresher going into the game, as their Northern Irish manager rested first-team players such as Steven Gerrard, Suarez and Daniel Agger for the side’s Europa League trip to Switzerland in midweek. Of the starting team that beat Young Boys 5-3 on Thursday night only Nuri Sahin and potentially Jose Enrique are expected to challenge for a place to take-on United, with the remainder of the side fringe and youth players.

The Merseysiders have started life under Rodgers in rather slow fashion, with the new boss looking for his first win in the Premier League. Two points from their first four games is a disappointing return, with defeats against West Brom and Arsenal coupled with draws against Manchester City and Sunderland.

The home fans will expect and demand a positive performance from their side as the sentiment of the recent revelations over the truth behind the Hillsborough disaster stick in the memory. It will be an emotional day for many of the Kop faithful, who will hope their passion for the city and the club is replicated by the playing staff on the pitch. Despite home advantage, Liverpool are still underdogs at home at 2.60, reflecting their drop in stature in the last two seasons.

United have started their Premier League campaign with three wins and one defeat, without looking at their best. An opening day loss to Everton has been countered by wins over Fulham, Southampton and Wigan, whilst the Old Trafford outfit also started their Champions League campaign with a 1-0 victory over Galatasaray on Wednesday.

Sir Alex Ferguson fielded a strong side against the Turks, the majority of which should play from the off against Liverpool. Wayne Rooney is still sidelined, and despite rumblings in the press of a quick-than-expected recovery, the England man will most likely miss out. Robin van Persie and Shinji Kagawa started in attack in midweek, but Sir Alex has Danny Welbeck and Javier Hernandez at his disposal also; Mexican Chicharito has scored in his last two visits to Anfield in the Premier League. Rio Ferdinand is likely to be restored to the starting XI in place of Jonny Evans, whilst Tom Cleverley will also push for a place from the start.

One issue that has arisen this season is that United have missed three penalties, with Hernandez, Van Persie and Nani all failing to hit the target from 12 yards. Bet At Home give odds of 3.40 for a spot-kick to be awarded in the game, and in the hostile environment of Anfield visiting takers must hold their nerve if the current trend of misses is to be bucked.

United skipper Nemanja Vidic has pleaded with travelling fans to refrain from Hillsborough-related songs or chants, which could well stoke the fires of an already tense meeting. Luis Suarez shinned Patrice Evra in the handshake last season at Old Trafford also and as such a number of factors could have a real impact on the game. United are slight favourites to win at 2.55 with Bet at Home.

The midfield will be a key area that could well decide the victor of the game, with Cleverley, Michael Carrick and Paul Scholes in line to face up against Gerrard, Joe Allen and Sahin or Jonjo Shelvey. In this fiery encounter there could well be a raft of yellow cards, and a bet on a sending off looks like a sensible decision at 3.40.

United fans are rightly proud of their 19 top-flight titles, one more than Liverpool, with the Red Devils winning 61 league encounters compared to the Merseysiders’ 53; there have been 44 draws. Despite this United have not won at Anfield in the last five times of asking in all competitions, with their last victory going back to December 2007 when Carlos Tevez scored the only goal of the game in a 1-0 victory.

This should be quite the spectacle and both sets of fans will be praying for victory. For Liverpool, Rodgers is under pressure to continue a strong home record against the old enemies and needs points after a slow Premier League start. United will want to take the emotive aspect out of the game, avoid controversy and escape with points, ideally three; one way or the other it will be scintillating stuff.




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33 Comments

  1. dijev says:

    Nani to shine!

  2. Proverb says:

    Silver
    That’s risking cause hem bitters are known for stealing everything MONEY

  3. Zino says:

    Oh no!! A second betting thread…. #jinx

  4. Adam says:

    Manchester United where poor against Gala on Wednesday. The only good moment was the return Fletcher. A lot of people are tipping Liverpool to get the win tomorrow and you don’t blame them. We have no balance or structure in our team and its frustrating to watch. I do put the fault at there hands of Mike Phelen. I believe we have got worse as a team since he has become the number 2 and he needs to be replaced with a more tactically astute man. The team is so open and vulnerable all the time now. We look like we could concede all the time. Under Queiroz we where more solid and had a strong defence, which allowed Rooney, Ronaldo, Scholes and Giggs to do damage to the opposition.

    Tomorrow is a massive game but out record at Anfield recently has been very poor and the way we are playing it seems hard to believe we will improve this. The emotional turmoil that Liverpool have gone through, and the fact that Liverpool are looking for their first win, just seems set for them to take three points. I really hope I’m wrong, but that would require a strong and balanced performance, which is not something we have managed to do so far. Ferguson underlined how important the CL was and the players hardly reacted with their performance on Wednesday, despite the win.

  5. TK99 says:

    Well i hope to see Anderson on the team on Sunday.He hasn’t playeed in the last three games for United, and he will be eager to prove that he still has future at Old Trafford .He was magnificent when we beat Liverpool at Anfield last time. The Midfield battle will be crucial in deciding the outcome of this fixture, that’s why we have to stay focus and avoid mistakes.

  6. ToniVHatesAgents says:

    At least Dirk Kuyt wont be there to fuck us over like he usually does…….if we can keep Suarez & Sterling quiet as far ss im concerned there will be no threat………but we are shite at anfield though so who knows?

  7. TG says:

    Every season is the same, we give it the big-one then turn up and do nothing there. Anyone who thinks this is a certain 3pts is deluded, wait and see!!!!

  8. parryheid says:

    The Kop always seem to have something to be emotional about and when I see the United team they will hopefully have something else to be emotional about after the game.

  9. The team that wouldn't die says:

    Not one Liverpool player would make the best United XI.
    We should beat them because we arebetter then them, and have been for 21 years now.
    The rest is just Psychology.

  10. Eric L'edieu says:

    Id like to think we’ll get three points, but sadly Im expecting the usual shite performance that we seem to have slipped into the last few visits there for some reason.
    Admittedly, it is their cup final, & they shamefully raise their efforts, but despite quite a few carragher non-red card referee showings, we’ve still been so poor countless times that there’s no turning it on the officials.
    As i say, hopefully Im wrong…….

  11. Costas says:

    2 betting threads? Really?

    Anyway, the real question is if our midfield will handle the pressure. The other lines should be fine.

  12. dannysoya LOVES USAIN BOLT says:

    At least let’s show up at Anfield this time. For the last FOUR YEARS we have played some of our WORST football at Anfield. Surely we are due a fantastic showing and a win? I don’t know what happens when we visit Anfield. Some sort of intimidation or players are just not at the races when we get to Anfield? Hopefully it’s different this time. We have Kagawa and Van Persie. Two players who can change a game in an instant. But to be frank i’m not really worried about what goes on upfront. I think we can handle their defense. What I am worried about is OUR DEFENSE. Hopefully the fact that it’s Liverpool should serve as some sort of deterrent to giving the ball away easily. I’d take ANYTHING we can get from Anfield but I badly want a win.

  13. Zibbie says:

    Costas says:
    2 betting threads? Really?
    And a Berba Jerk Off thread to boot!!!!!! wow all that is going on . A player no longer with the club and 2 betting threads!!!!!

    GO ROONEY!!!!!!!!!!

  14. Zibbie says:

    Next Thread,
    Why Man Utd should sell Rooney!! :mrgreen: !!!!!!

  15. King Eric says:

    Alright lads. Yeah I popped to ND58 but it isn’t for me, that’s just my opinion. Infact I don’t blog much these days, haven’t the time. Better the devil you know anyway.

    Hope tomorrow goes off without incident and our lads behave themselves. Kids died at Hillsborough and now being a Dad I wouldn’t wish that on anyone, even those scouse bastards.

    Anyway call me mental but I would actually play Anderson tomorrow alongside Cleverley and the superb Carrick. If he turns up he adds bite and drive to the middle of the park. No offence to the legend but I do NOT want to see Giggsy on that team sheet. It would be a baptism of fire for Kagawa at this early stage so would play the aforementioned 3 behind RVP. Keeper wise it’s De Gea all day long for me. He was outstanding at Anfield last season. I like Anders but he has tended to play in the easier games where we haven’t had much defending to do. His kicking is awful. Evans should start for me with Vida . He was decent on Wednesday. I am a big fan of Jonny.

  16. King Eric says:

    Oh and for me Rooney can’t come back quick enough. He can be playing shite and bag a brace. A big miss. Talking of misses lets hope Fletch does OK on Wed then he can kick on from there.

  17. Zibbie says:

    Thanks KE!!! Love your insight!!

  18. The devil in me says:

    My xi would be

    De gea

    Rafael Vidic Evans Evra

    Cleveley Carrick

    Valencia Kagawa Nani

    RVP

    i dont see a stronger team than this..i cant see scholes starting 3 straight games and i pray to God giggs doesnt start

  19. dannysoya LOVES USAIN BOLT says:

    LOL KE. totally agree with your posts. I also don’t want to see Giggs anywhere NEAR the pitch at the beginning of the game. have to inject some youth and speed into our midfield tomorrow. Scholes I think is also tired. So Anderson and Cleverley is not a bad line up at all.

  20. ak47 says:

    Don’t worry about our penalty taker for this game. We don’t get penalties at Anfileld no matter how obvious the foul is.

    Last time we had a penalty at Anfield? 1999.

    In that same period how many penalties have Liverpool had at OT?

  21. sahal_MUFC says:

    Sterling vs Evra is the most worrying area for me,also Suarez tends to make a lot of different runs are our CBs will have to follow him since they get no cover from the midfield :( .
    I hope Carrick and Scholes/Cleverly will play deep as the scouse midfield don’t really put pressure from the front.
    I wonder who will start on the left side of midfield,I just pray that it is not welbeck!We lose our shape completely when he is there.

  22. ji sung says:

    Still the biggest game of the season imo. Oh I bloody hope the lads can get a win and its about time we do it as well. Its been too long! Come on lads! Let’s fucking av it with those scouse bastards!
    I’d go with ddg, rafa,ri,nemanja,buttner(leave patrice out of this game please fergie-for obvious reasons and why not let Buttner have a go?, valencia,carrick,cleverley,Nani, Kagawa,RvP

  23. Rob Taylor says:

    You should have just written:

    ‘BET WITH BET AT HOME!!’

    I get the feeling that was the point you were trying to get across

  24. Ash says:

    I will fancy us to win. We may not have a great midfield but so doesn’t liverpool. Let us be positive. We can beat them. Win against them will give us a huge boost.

    King Eric- How are you buddy? always nice to see you post.

  25. Proverb says:

    Fuck it haters
    Berba just assisted rodallega for fulhams goal
    Whoever thinks berba is crap should hang himself cause is simply wasting the precious oxygen

  26. parryheid says:

    sahal_MUFC

    Think you will find Sterling is coming up against Rafael,but if he comes down the other side it will be agaist Buttner and I know who my money would be on to win that one ,and Liverpool’s right back will be in for a torrid time of it facing Buttner whenhe comes upfield.

  27. Zibbie says:

    BERBA sucks donkey shlongs!!

  28. Neo says:

    It will be an intense game as usual but lacking in quality also as usual. Fergie definitely has dug himself a hole in terms of his midfield recruiting and he knows it. Pushing Scholes into midfield against Gala after playing a PL game three days ago is just ridiculous. I would have loved Fergie to buy a proper midfielder but well o well. Anyways, I am expecting a win against Looserpool and that should be that.

  29. tom c says:

    Zibbie

    mentionning Berba. really. on a United/pool better thread. fucking pathetic mate.

  30. tom c says:

    *mentioning

    fuck.

  31. tom c says:

    *betting, too. fuck the iPad.

  32. Adam says:

    Well, I think if we can win this game with all the pressure associated with it it’ll be a good gauge of what our chances are this season. We will face tougher opposition. Chelsea are having a good start with Oscar/Hazard in great form, City of course, and man, Everton is putting on a good show.

  33. Adam says:

    SEPTEMBER 22, 2012 AT 12:54
    Adam says:

    Huh.. i guess there are two Adam’s here now…

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