The international break has been and gone. Premier League football returns this weekend and the early kick off is a mouth watering clash between two of the most exciting teams the division has to offer. Manchester City entertain Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool at Eastland’s.
Both of these clubs currently occupy the top four having both collected seven points thus far and you can be sure neither side will attempt to ‘park the bus’ in this one.
The home side have an array of attacking talent in their ranks but one area of the pitch would concern me from a City standpoint. The heart of the midfield.
Liverpool’s trio of Can, Henderson and Wijnaldum is far more combative and if the likes of Silva and De Bruyne fail to put in a shift you could see the Red’s dominate in that key area of the park.
The City midfield certainly has the talent when in possession and if they click will be difficult to contain but I’m sure Jurgen Klopp will be aware of that. I expect the Liverpool midfield to go out there, press and impose themselves physically on the game.
If they get that right there’s no doubt the likes of KDB and Silva will be out of their comfort zone and we’ll need to see them dig deep (something that doesn’t come naturally to them).
It can go either way but its clear to me the midfield battle will decide this one.
Man City will be without Raheem Sterling, the England internationals red card at Bournemouth last time out means he will have to miss the visit of his former club through suspension.
Vincent Kompany didn’t feature for Belgium during the international break and there are still question marks over his fitness. Pep Guardiola will have to make a late call and it remains to be seen whether his captain will be available for selection.
Ilkay Gundogan continues to work his way back to fitness after a long term injury but is unlikely to feature this weekend.
Liverpool welcome Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain into their squad but I’d be very surprised if he walked straight into the starting XI.
Philippe Coutinho made his first appearance of the season for Brazil during the international break and is now available for selection, it will be interesting to see how Klopp deals with this one.
The German boss has a number of decisions to make going into this one. Mignolet or Karius? Alexander-Arnold or Gomez? Robertson or Moreno?
I expect to see an entertaining fixture, all the evidence suggests both sides will feel they can win this. Neither manager is known for their defensive competency and that can only mean goals.
Liverpool’s away form versus the rest of the top 6 under Jurgen Klopp has been nothing short of remarkable but equally on their day Man City are capable of decimating anyone.
Score draw for me!