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As it happened: Man United vs Liverpool, Premier League

Man United welcomed Liverpool to Old Trafford as these age-old rivals battled for second spot in the Premier League.

Hello, and welcome to today’s liveblog.

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Kick off is at 12.30pm.

Let’s get started with the team news…

So, today’s teams are:

Man United: de Gea, Valencia, Smalling, Bailly, Young, McTominay, Matic, Mata, Rashford, Lukaku, Sanchez.

Subs: Lindelof, Lingard, Carrick, Romero, Shaw, Fellaini, Darmian.

Liverpool: Karius, Alexander-Arnold, Lovren, van Dijk, Robertson, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Milner, Can, Salah, Firmino, Mane.

Subs: Wijnaldum, Gomez, Henderson, Lallana, Mignolet, Solanke, Matip.

Now, the obvious BIG BIG news from today’s teams sees Paul Pogba absent from Jose Mourinho’s starting XI. The French midfielder is carrying an injury and has been replaced by Juan Mata, who has enjoyed a decent record against Liverpool in seasons of late.

Right, how do we see this one going then? Despite the huge rivalry that exists between these two sides, it must be acknowledged that these games between Man United and Liverpool have often failed to meet expectation. However with the prospect of second place at stake — plus all the usual bragging rights — it has all the usual promise and expectation of a great game between two highly-competitive and determined teams.

Who’s going to win this?

Poll Results:

Man United win (279)
Liverpool win (197)
Draw (90)

A little over 20 minutes to go as supporters continue to make their way into Old Trafford.

Manchester United v Liverpool - Premier League Laurence Griffiths Laurence Griffiths

Manchester United v Liverpool - Premier League

Manchester United v Liverpool - Premier League

Following their progression to the quarter-finals of the Champions League, a win today would cap off a stellar week for Liverpool. They would not only go second in the Premier League but leapfrog their rivals here today in the process on their own patch.

That said, the last four meetings between these sides have all ended level pegging. Add to that Jose Mourinho’s impressive home record at Old Trafford this season and it looks quite evenly matched.

Use all the cliches you need, it’s all to play for!

Kick-off: We’re underway at Old Trafford!

A quiet opening first couple of minutes on the pitch as Liverpool enjoy possession around the back, passing it to and fro, but it’s a raucous atmosphere off it as both sets of supporters make themselves heard this afternoon. A cracking atmosphere indeed.

Antonio Valencia is on the receiving end of a poor challenge from Emre Can, as the German defender attempts to dribble the ball out from the back through midfield. His touch is too heavy though and he collides into the Man United right back.

Emre Can of course is making his 100th Premier League start for Liverpool today. This overhead kick against Watford is undoubtedly a standout memory for the midfielder — he will struggle to score many better.


LOUIS HD / YouTube

Still a very quiet opening period after 10 minutes of play. Neither side has offered a shot at goal thus far, as both sets of players still seem to be trying to suss one another out. Cagey.

Liverpool earn the game first corner and with Virgil van Dijk prodding and probing inside the area, the set-piece promises a threat. But Mohamed Salah’s cross spins across the box to no-one in particular.


Man United have the lead! It’s route one to the extreme but you cannot deny what a stunning finish came at the end of it from the right foot of Marcus Rashford!

He gets on the end of a David de Gea kick-out punted up the pitch, cuts inside beautifully before curling an audacious strike beyond the fingertips of Loris Karius to make it 1-0. Excellent finish from the forward.

The game has exploded into life suddenly. Juan Mata almost puts Rashford in for his second in quick succession, but bearing down on goal he has the ball deflected out wide and away.

“They sense blood,” says Gary Neville in commentary, as Jose Mourinho’s men up the ante.

Chance! At the other end a fine delivery into the box from James Milner sees van Dijk head ever no narrowly wide of the post. He did so well to get away from his marker and get some serious neck muscle behind his effort, but it failed to hit the target.


Manchester United are in dreamland! Marcus Rashford has his second of the afternoon and once again it’s a fine finish with his right boot curled beyond the reach of Karius.

It’s some calamitous defending from Dejan Lovren and Virgil van Dij as Romelu Lukaku bullies them inside the box. The ball falls on a plate to Rashford and he does so well to slot the ball under the dive of Karius, who had himself in all sorts of knots.

That’s what it means to David de Gea.

Manchester United v Liverpool - Premier League Michael Regan Michael Regan

Marcus Rashford seems to be involved in everything so far this afternoon. The forward receives a yellow card for a late sliding challenge which caught James Milner late.

Chance for a third as United continue to flood bodies forward at any given chance. Space opens up in front of Romelu Lukaku 25 yards from goal, however his neat through ball aimed for team-mate Rashford running behind is intercepted at the last second.

Liverpool try to get going in the final third but frustration is breeding more frustration for Jurgen Klopp’s side. A good opening presents itself with United momentarily backs-against-the-wall, however Sadio Mane’s attempted through ball went no-where but towards David de Gea — who gathered easily.

It’s been a productive afternoon in front of goal for this man. Will he grab a third and complete his hat-trick?

Manchester United v Liverpool - Premier League Matthew Peters Matthew Peters


Manchester United v Liverpool - Premier League

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain receives a yellow card as Scott McTominay almost broke away for a counter-attack.

It was poor from the Liverpool man, who gave away possession sloppily. Seeing no other option he dragged his opposite man down and goes in the book as a result.

Close! Juan Mata almost puts this game to bed from close range. Alexis Sanchez picks the Spaniard out with a brilliant chipped cross behind enemy lines. With no marker in sight Mata attempts an acrobatic effort inside the box, but he drags it inches wide of the target.

Andy Robertson with a powerful low cross, but Ashley Young is on hand to clear it away. That easily could have been a way back into this game for Klopp’s side, but Young shows great awareness to clear the danger.

He really has found a new lease of life as a converted fullback over the last couple of seasons under Jose Mourinho.

There will be two minutes of additional time to come at the end of the first half.


Well, what do we make of that? Marcus Rashford’s brace has Man United in the ascendency and in control of this game. It was a lax opening period before the forward’s brilliantly-taken opening goal exploded the game into life.

It was a David de Gea punt up field, but you just cannot take away the fact it was a brilliant finish from Rashford to curl the ball powerfully beyond Loris Karius.

He added a second not long later — 10 minutes later actually — following some calamitous defending from Virgil van Dijk and Dejan Lovren to allow the ball fall on a plate to the striker, with Rashford again sticking the ball beyond Karius with a good low finish.

Will Jose Mourinho’s side add to their tally after the break and make second spot in the Premier League their own, or will Liverpool turn this around?

Second-half: We’re back underway for another 45 minutes!

Liverpool come out the blocks right from the off in the second half. Some tenacious work from Mohamed Salah earns his side a corner — the winger delivers the cross, but Virgil van Dijk heads over the top of David de Gea’s crossbar.

Jurgen Klopp’s side continue to press forward here in search of a way back into this game. One goal will halve the deficit but it’s proving tricky to break down their opponents so far despite the presence of Mane, Salah and Firmino — who have been uncharacteristically quiet.

A good spell from Liverpool yields a host of shots from range, all of which are blocked down. A couple of penalty shouts have also come from the away end for handball, but none are given.

Replays show a ball into the box did in fact strike the arm of Antonio Valencia, but referee Craig Pawson waved play on without a doubt in his mind.

It’s been a frustrating afternoon for the visitors as they remain two goals down with a little over half an hour remaining.

930044862 Michael Regan Michael Regan

Manchester United v Liverpool - Premier League

Manchester United v Liverpool - Premier League

Substitution for Liverpool: Adam Lallana replaces Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain.

Jurgen Klopp will hope the creative flair of Adam Lallana can get Liverpool going in the final third with time running out. Mane, Salah and Firmino have been off their game and failed to produce any sort of the magic which has been their hallmark this season.

Liverpool have produced 10 shots so far, but none of which you could say have properly tested David de Gea between the sticks.


Liverpool are on the scoresheet! Klopp’s men have halved the deficit but it’s another Man United name on the board. A disastrous flick from Eric Bailly sees the defender turn the ball into his own net.

It was a low, dangerous cross from Sadio Mane along the left wing and, attempting to clear his lines, the Ivory Coast international only succeeded in beating his own goalkeeper with an awkward slice of the ball.

Now then, this certainly will be an intriguing last 20 minutes. United had done so well to shut their opponents out and limit their chances at goal, but seemingly out of nothing Liverpool are firmly back in the thick of this.

Meanwhile Marcus Rashford is brought off to a standing ovation. He will not get a derby day hat-trick and is replaced by the more defence-minded approach of Marouane Fellaini in the middle of the park.

Mourinho wants to see this out as a 2-1 win.

Heated tensions now as Dejan Lovren and Marouane Fellaini clash twice with some rough challenges from the Liverpool defender. Jurgen Klopp is clearly animated on the sideline and exits his technical area shouting and waving his arms. The German is told to clam down by the referee and play continues.

Substitution for Liverpool: Georginio Wijnaldum replaces Trent Alexander-Arnold.

Substitution for Liverpool: Dominic Solanke replaces Andrew Robertson.

A half-chance for Man United as the hosts earn a free-kick. The ball is crossed into the box and duly recycled before being crossed a second time — Juan Mata almost gets on the end of it but his effort is blocked down by a host of Liverpool bodies inside the penalty area.

The game is finely balanced but still quite slow and stop-start. This will suit Mourinho as he attempts to wear down the clock with another substitution, but Jurgen Klopp is still instructing his side to go for the jugular and grab what would be a late, late equaliser here.

There will be six minutes of additional time to come.

Liverpool still pressing forward with three minutes to go. They are pushing all men forward in search of a leveller. A late corner is earned and Loris Karius asks his manager’s permission to join the attack, but he is told to stay put.

Three corners in quick succession for Liverpool. The tension inside Old Trafford is unrelenting with a minute to go now.


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