Vital Football

Latest Manchester United News

Liverpool v United - The Lowdown

Liverpool v United - The Lowdown

As you probably know, the Liverpool v Manchester United clash is looming. Super Sunday or Grand Slam Sunday or whatever Sky has dubbed it, it's upon us so it's time to analyse the key match-ups all over the field.

It's never easy to pick a starting line-up and especially in Benitez's case it will be bloody difficult. However, I'll try to predict the starting elevens.

Liverpool: Reina - Arbeloa, Hyppia, Carragher, Riise - Benayoun, Gerrard, Mascherano, Kewell - Crouch, Torres.

It's almost their Marseille starting eleven, except that Crouch would come in for Kuyt - I predict this for the sake of a bit of rotation. Xabi Alonso is short of match fitness, Babel is better as a substitute it seems so for me, their midfield picks itself though it can be imagined that after starting two games in four days, Kewell will be benched. And a 4-5-1 can't be ruled out, with Sissoko drafted into midfield and Torres alone up front.

United: Van der Sar - Brown, Ferdinand, Vidic, Evra - Anderson, Hargreaves - Rooney, Giggs, Ronaldo - Tevez.

I think it's a relatively safe bet to say this will be our starting eleven. Hargreaves is fit, according to Fergie therefore he will start, the attacking quartet picks itself just as the defence.

So let's see those match-ups.

Benayoun v Evra: I think it's the most straightforward. Evra all the way, he's in the form of his life, possibly the best left-back in the world at the moment. I can't see an inconsistent Benayoun troubling him unduly but I might be wrong of course.

Kewell v Brown: If it was a 25-year-old Kewell, playing in his best form, I'd have to go for the Australian. But now I think they are evenly matched: Brown is having his best season for a while and very consistent. Kewell is in good form but he'll have a difficult task. Same goes for Babel who is a bit up and down, unpredictable. His pace could worry Brown though.

Torres v our centre-backs: That's the big one. I think it does not matter much if they play with two strikers or only Torres - it's the Spaniard we have to contain at all costs. He's Liverpool's only attacker who can claim to be in the Rooney-Tevez-Ronaldo category, his pace is exceptional, his technique is outstanding and has an eye for goal. Vidic and Rio will have a mammoth task - but if anyone, they, cornerstone's of the Prem's meanest defence, can stop him.

Anderson and Hargreaves v Gerrard and Mascherano: It all depends on Gerrard. If he's on song, our admirable partnership will be in real trouble. However, if his Hollywood passes go astray as they so often do... then Liverpool will have trouble in attack because Mascherano rarely makes meaningful forward passes and concedes possession too often. In that sense our midfielders are more of the all-rounder type. Will be very interesting.

Giggs/Rooney v Arbeloa: I think it will be Rooney if we opt for the 4-2-3-1 which usually sees Giggs playing in the hole behind the main striker. The Spanish right-back is enjoying a good season so far but will be under severe test, no matter which United player he faces. He did well against Rosicky earlier but now will have a more difficult job.

Ronaldo v Riise: No contest. Riise is past his peak though still a very good player while Ronaldo is firing on all cylinders. Clichy is much faster than Riise yet he lost Ronaldo on two occasions at the Emirates and the winger ended up with scoring one and setting up another. Hopefully he'll be up to the occasion again.

Tevez v Carragher and Hyypia: Well, it's clear that long balls won't be successful. However, neither of these two is particularly quick and they were often stretched against Arsenal so that's what we've got to do: make them run. Tevez's pace and mobility must be exploited. He was contained well by Toure and Gallas who are very quick for centre-backs but he could thrive between Hyypia and Carragher if he gets good service.

To conclude: on pure quality (especially if we look at who we can bring in from the bench) we should win this game, I firmly believe we have the better team and Ferguson so often got the better of Benitez. However, Liverpool's relief and joy over the 4-0 win at Marseille might cause problems if it liberates them and allows them to play as freely as they've rarely done under Benitez. Let's hope it won't happen and we record another Anfield victory.

Win FREE pizza with Vital Football!
Select your team and get 50% off if they score twice.
www.papajohns.co.uk/football

Writer:Zae
Date:Friday December 14 2007
Time: 6:31PM

Best of Vital Network

Comments

0
you sort of nicked it last year I remember - feisty encounter this time for me!
merlin
14/12/2007 19:39:00
0
I don't think it'll be Ronaldo vs Riise. It's more likely to be Ronaldo vs Arbeloa with Finnan on the opposite side. Don't forget, Arbeloa pocketed Messi.
Aamir
14/12/2007 19:54:00
0
i think tht man u might just nik it, because man u are a good team at the moment !
Dann-leeds
14/12/2007 20:17:00
0
Finnan won't play Aamir, he's injured.
JohnDoe
14/12/2007 20:22:00
0
That's a shame. He was named on the bench for the Marseilles game (I think) so I thought he might play.
Aamir
14/12/2007 20:38:00
0
Anderson hargreaves vs gerrard mascherano looks good but yet again man utd look too strong !
Jakk-United-2007
14/12/2007 20:45:00
0
man u will not nick it most probebly a draw and this comes from a liverpool fan
matt-liverpool 4 eva
14/12/2007 21:51:00
0
I fink man-utd will win this game ! Coz our middfielders are 2 strong 4 there middfielders but we could end up with a draw! but i fink that we will scrape it !!!
mufc-henry
15/12/2007 15:37:00
0
"Coz our middfielders are 2 strong 4 there middfielders." Have to disagrre. it depends on who you count as your midfielders. In central mid, you don't have a chance in hell.
Aamir
15/12/2007 15:46:00
0
ronaldo, hargreaves, anderson, giggs vs benayoun, gerrard, mascherano, kewell...i know what one i'd rather have aamir!
united4life
15/12/2007 18:22:00
Page 1/4
  1. 1
  2. 2
  3. 3
  4. 4

Login to post a comment

Recent Manchester United Articles

LvG`s Surprise

Let's hope it doesn't backfire!

Rashford Unlikely to Feature in France

Is the claim today!

Deal Sealed

In previous articles we`ve covered Manchester United`s interest in a young Portuguese midfielder.

Mourinho Is the Next United Manager Claim!

Claims a very respectable source.

Archived Vital United Articles

Vital United articles from

Site Journalists

Red Boy
Editor email
Profile
Charlie Bacchus
no email
Profile

Current Poll (see more polls)

Manchester United v Leicester City?
Suggested By: Red Boy
United to Win!95%
Leicester City to Win!5%
A Draw!0%
ScoopDragon Premier League Network Sites

League Table

# Team P W D L Pts. GD
1 Leicester City 35 22 10 3 76 30
2 Spurs 35 19 12 4 69 39
3 Man City 35 19 7 9 64 32
4 Arsenal 35 18 10 7 64 24
5 Man Utd 34 17 8 9 59 12
6 West Ham 34 14 14 6 56 14
7 Liverpool 34 15 10 9 55 13
8 Southampton 35 15 9 11 54 12
9 Chelsea 34 12 11 11 47 7
10 Stoke 35 13 8 14 47 -14
11 Everton 34 9 14 11 41 5
12 Watford 34 11 8 15 41 -7
13 WBA 35 10 11 14 41 -11
14 AFC Bournemouth 35 11 8 16 41 -19
15 Swansea 35 10 10 15 40 -15
16 Crystal Palace 35 10 9 16 39 -9
17 Sunderland 34 7 10 17 31 -18
18 Norwich 34 8 7 19 31 -25
19 Newcastle 35 7 9 19 30 -26
R Aston Villa 35 3 7 25 16 -44
Latest F1 News
Latest Vital Boxing News

Recent Manchester United Results (view all)

Manchester United Fixtures (view all)

May 1 2016 1:30PM : Leicester City (H)
Barclays Premier League
May 7 2016 12:45PM : Norwich City (a)
Barclays Premier League
May 10 2016 7:45PM : West Ham United (a)
Barclays Premier League
May 15 2016 3:00PM : AFC Bournemouth (H)
Barclays Premier League

Vital Members League Table

RankNamePoints
1.hayourdayle1
2.alvinemz1