Everything you need to know ahead of the Premier League clash at the Etihad on Sunday afternoon
Liverpool are determined to make it five consecutive Premier League wins on the spin against Manchester City as they advance their ambitions of a Champions League spot at the expense of Pep Guardiola’s side.
Man Utd’s £90m problem
No manager has recorded more victories (six) over the Spaniard in all competitions than Jurgen Klopp, who expects the Reds to continue their unbeaten form against the current top six.
Sunday’s hosts at the Etihad, meanwhile, have shipped in 23 goals in 12 meetings with the Merseysiders, and need to deliver a strong reaction after slumping out of Europe’s elite competition on away goals to Monaco.
Captain Jordan Henderson (foot) will be unavailable with Klopp hoping “he can run in the second week of the international break” and return for the Merseyside derby against Everton.
Former City striker Daniel Sturridge is also definitely ruled out with a hip issue.
Dejan Lovren worked on his sharpness after a knee injury by undertaking 75 minutes for Liverpool’s U23s on Monday, while Roberto Firmino has been running outside again.
The Brazilian is expected to return to team training either on Friday or Saturday and will be assessed late on. Divock Origi, meanwhile, is a fresh doubt.
“The icing on the cake is that Divock Origi was off yesterday because he felt a little bit ill – probably not serious but in our situation we have to be really sensitive,” Klopp explained.
“That’s what we did. We will see if he can be involved today or tomorrow, but it’s not 100 per cent.”
Neither team have any suspension concerns.
LIVERPOOL POTENTIAL STARTING LINE-UP
Klopp’s assertion that he has a “few open questions” is spot on both centrally in attack and at the back. He could choose to stick with Ragnar Klavan as Joel Matip’s partner in the heart of defence for consistency with Liverpool winning two on the spin.
Barca eye Verratti & Bellerin
The Estonia international was at the heart of defence alongside Lovren for the reverse fixture, which produced a clean sheet.
The real issue is up front, where both Firmino and Origi have missed sessions. The pair can still prove their fitness ahead of the Sunday showdown and with the Brazilian phenomenal in previous outings against City, Liverpool would be massively lifted if he can line up from the off.
MAN CITY TEAM NEWS
City are unbeaten in six Premier League games, but have lost five of their last six top-flight fixtures against Liverpool. This encounter pits together the two best passing teams in the division, who have also averaged the most distance run (the visitors with 117.3km per match and the hosts managing 114.8km).
Both teams have the desire to dominate the ball and assert themselves on proceedings, with the Reds proving how effective they can be out of possession and on the break against City’s expansive play in the 4-1 victory at the Etihad last season.
Klopp’s men will need to be compact, and like they did at Anfield on New Year’s Eve, look to stifle the supply to Sergio Aguero.
Ilkay Gundogan (knee) and Gabriel Jesus (foot) remain on City’s absentee list.
BEST OPTA MATCH FACTS
Liverpool have won four consecutive league games against Man City for the first time since 1981
Manchester City have failed to keep a clean sheet in each of their last 12 games in all competitions against Liverpool, shipping 23 in the process
Sergio Aguero has found the back of the net in all four of his Premier League games versus Liverpool at the Etihad Stadium (four goals).
Philippe Coutinho has scored more Premier League goals versus Manchester City than against any other team (4) in the competition.
TV COVERAGE & KICK-OFF TIME
The match will be televised live on Sky Sports in the UK on Sunday, with kick off at 16:30pm BST.