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Dublin: 20 °C Sunday 19 August, 2018
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JUST THE TWO Premier League matches up for consideration today and, after Bournemouth handed Arsenal a 2-1 defeat in the early game, it’s over to Anfield — where the Reds host Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City.

The last time these two met back in September, Sadio Mane was sent off in the first half as City ran out 5-0 winners at the Etihad. They remain unbeaten in the league, while Liverpool haven’t suffered a loss since going down 4-1 to Tottenham in October.

It has all the makings of a cracker and we’re 35 minutes away from kick-off.

Liverpool’s £75 million man Virgil van Dijk is OUT for the home side due to a tight hamstring. The Dutchman is only in the door at the club but he’ll be a big loss nonetheless.

Britain Soccer FA Cup Source: Rui Vieira

Here at the teams…

Jurgen Klopp makes three changes with Van Dijk replaced by Dejan Lovren, who captains the team. Mohamed Salah, with 23 goals in all competitions this season, returns after missing the last two games due to a groin injury, while Georginio  Wijnaldum is also back in the XI.

Liverpool: Karius, Gomez, Matip, Lovren, Robertson, Can, Wijnaldum, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Mane, Salah, Firmino.

Subs: Mignolet, Klavan, Alexander-Arnold, Milner, Lallana, Solanke, Ings.

City boss has recalled a total of six players to his starting line-up –  Ederson, Nicolas Otamendi, Fabian Delph, Kyle Walker, Fernandinho and Sergio Aguero.

 

Manchester City: Ederson, Walker, Stones, Otamendi, Delph, Fernandinho, De Bruyne, Gundogan, Sane, Sterling, Aguero.

Subs: Bravo, Zinchenko, Danilo, Mangala, D Silva, Bernardo, Diaz.

 

 

If this song hasn’t been stuck in your head all week, where exactly have you been hiding?

Richy Sheehy aka Cork’s biggest Liverpool fan ‘Kevin Murphy’ has become a viral sensation since posting this video earlier this week. He made an appearance on Soccer AM yesterday morning and there are plans for fans to sing his chant, a take on The Archies’ 1969 hit ‘Sugar Sugar’, in The Kop today.

Dreams can indeed come true…

Source: Richy Sheehy/YouTube

Okay, predictions please…


Poll Results:





Flag 1Mins

Kick-off – We’re up and running. Both teams wearing their traditional home kits.

5Mins

An early chance for Liverpool as Mane is put through by Firmino. He has to turn back and Salah attempts a strike, which is blocked by Stones. It’s been a high-tempo start, as expected.

Flag 9Mins

GOAL! Liverpool 1-0 Manchester City (Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain) 

Liverpool take the lead! The much-maligned Oxlade-Chamberlain advances forward and drives the ball past Ederson into the bottom corner. Anfield erupts.

15Mins

Liverpool attack again through Mane, who backheels to Salah. The Egyptian’s chip is headed away and City clear but the Reds are in again moments later. This time, Salah goes it alone and dances by Otamendi but he can only poke wide.

21Mins

Some Liverpool fans are booing Raheem Sterling every time he touches the ball. Really…?!

23Mins

Chance for City. Sane creates space for himself with a neat flick inside. The German shoots at goal but see the attempt deflected behind for a corner. It comes to nothing.

26Mins

Delph is down injured and he will need some treatment after over-stretching. Guardiola has been very animated on the sideline over the past few minutes.

30Mins

Substitution – Delph has tried to run off that problem but that’s the end of his involvement as Danilo is coming on.

34Mins

We’re 34 minutes in and Karius has just made his first save of the afternoon. De Bruyne lines one up from distance and lets fly but it’s a routine stop.

Flag 40Mins

GOAL! Liverpool 1-1 Manchester City (Leroy Sane) 

City pull level five minutes before half-time. Sane goes by Gomez far too easily after a diagonal pass, before bursting into the box and drilling past Karius, who should be doing better.

45Mins

Fernandinho has a go from long range but it’s a few yards wide of the post. Two minutes of added time to play.

Flag 45Mins

Half-time: Liverpool 1-1 Manchester City 

Liverpool v Manchester City - Premier League - Anfield Sane scores for Man City. Source: Peter Byrne

45Mins

He has a point you know. Surely a top class goalkeeper should be Liverpool’s main priority now.

Flag 46Mins

Second half – The game has restarted and there are no half-time changes to report.

51Mins

Gomez gets down the right flank and sends a cross into the danger area but Ederson is out quick to save. The Brazilian goalkeeper begins a lightning counter attack, which results in a City corner. From that, Otamendi rises highest to head onto the crossbar. That wasn’t far away.

56Mins

Pressure from Liverpool. Ederson palms out from a corner and Salah strikes first time. That’s saved by the City keeper, and Oxlade-Chamberlain ends up drilling into the side-netting.

Flag 62Mins

GOAL! Liverpool 2-1 Manchester City (Roberto Firmino) 

That’s an unbelievable finish from Firmino. The Brazilian out-muscles Stones before pulling off the most delicate of chips over his compatriot Ederson.

61Mins

GOAL! Liverpool 3-1 Manchester City (Sadio Mane) 

Wow! Two goals in as many minutes and the Reds have stunned City. Salah finds Mane in acres of space and the former Southampton man rifles the ball into the top corner with his left foot.

68Mins

GOAL! Liverpool 4-1 Manchester City (Mohamed Salah) 

Incredible stuff. Ederson, way out from his goal, clears straight to Salah and he lobs the ball perfectly into an empty net. City are at sixes and sevens right now and the unbeaten run is in real danger with 20 minutes to go.

78Mins

A Man City cross finds Otamendi at the back post but the Argentine defender can’t make sufficient contact to turn it towards goal.

79Mins

Substitution – Klopp withdraws Can and brings on James Milner.

82Mins

Liverpool may be 4-1 up but they still look dangerous on the break. Firmino drives forward before cutting back and picking out Wijnaldum, who drags a shot wide.

Flag 84Mins

GOAL! Liverpool 4-2 Manchester City (Bernardo Silva) 

City have one back and it’s substitute Silva who finishes off from close range after good work from Aguero.

87Mins

Another change – Salah’s work for the night is done and Adam Lallana comes on for the final few minutes.

90Mins

Just four minutes of added time left now.

Flag 90Mins

GOAL! Liverpool 4-3 Manchester City (Ilkay Gundogan) 

There’s only a goal in it! Aguero clips a ball into the box and Gundogan chests before poking home. A nervy closing minutes for Liverpool.

What a game that was! Liverpool bring Manchester City’s unbeaten run to an end after putting four past the league leaders, but Guardiola’s men very nearly came back to claim a point.

City are still 15 points ahead but Man United could cut it to 12 with a win against Stoke at Old Trafford tomorrow night.

About the author:

Ben Blake

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