Louis Saha played in six games against Liverpool, including the game at Old Trafford which saw Rio Ferdinand score an injury time winning header, as well as when John O’Shea scored at the death in front of the Kop, which put United nine points clear at the top of the table.
In an exclusive interview with The Republik of Mancunia on behalf of 888Sport.com, who are putting betting at the heart of football debate by asking punters to have the #LastWord over their mates by backing their banter with a bet, Saha has spoken about his memory of playing in these games and his hopes for James Wilson to play on Sunday.
You played six times for United against Liverpool and won four of those games. What was your favourite game against them?
I will always remember the one when we basically won the title, you know when we went away to Anfield and John O’Shea scored that goal, that is my favourite memory. But you know, it’s quite difficult. it’s a great memory but at the same time it’s a bit frustrating because I would have loved to score that goal! So yes, it was a huge moment because you feel like you achieve so much during the full season and it was great to have that feeling away from home, especially at Anfield.
How did it feel to be on the pitch for United in a Liverpool game?
It’s special. Van Gaal already mentioned it. He was feeling it through Giggs’ attitude. You can see they’re committed. This is one of the most important games of the season for the players, for the staff, for the fans. Everything is of double in importance even if it’s not. Those games are special. You always feel you are privileged to take part in the game.
How differently do Manchester United take these games compared to regular matches?
It’s completely different. Obviously, it’s football but the expectation from both the fans and players is so huge that everything that happened before the game is not relevant. The pressure, the passion and all that: it’s just a huge, huge day for everybody. So what is nice about that is people like Giggsey will be there to really make that feeling concrete for the players.
Which strikers do you think should be starting against Liverpool on Sunday?
I think there is someone who scored two goals not too long ago. I think he must be playing. And when you put the team down you always have Rooney around as one of your essential players, so I really think he’d go for those two for sure. Strike partners are something very important in the team, especially when their confidence is high but it’s more the shape of the game and how you want to win that game. Louis van Gaal is the king of tactics and I’m pretty sure he’s got a plan.
Could James Wilson play a part?
I would be really happy about him, yes. He’s a good player. He’s still young so he’s got time, and I see that sometimes the mistake of young players is that they want to play as quick as possible. They forget they are at Manchester United or Milan or Real Madrid. They have to understand that these are big sides so you have to learn and understand the expectation. But he will learn quick and he will have his time.
Do you have a prediction?
Yes. 2-0 for United.
This interview was conducted by Greg Johnson. This interview was conducted by Greg Johnson. Louis Saha is an 888sport #LastWord ambassador. Join the debate on Twitter @888sport, share your opinion on Facebook.com/888sportfans and read the best analysis on the betting brand’s dedicated blog. Sign-up now and claim £88 of free bets at 888sport.com.
United are 3/4 to beat Liverpool on 888Sport.com.
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