Manchester City vs Liverpool. Prediction and Preview. Probable Lineups, Team News, Stats and more

The classic of recent years: Klopp versus Guardiola. Who will prevail this time around?

Manchester City FC will host Liverpool FC in the English Premier League 29th-tour match at Etihad Stadium. The fixture will take place on Saturday, April 1, beginning at 17:00 IST.

What can we expect this Saturday night? Parimatch News will tell you everything you need to know ahead of the upcoming match.

Manchester City News & Current Form:

Manchester City are the second team in the EPL standings. The team has 61 points and continues to fight for the championship, as they are eight points behind Arsenal FC with a game to spare. Man City are the most outstanding side in the league. In 27 outings, Guardiola’s side have scored 67 goals, an average of 2.48 per game. In 14 of the 27 fixtures, the Citizens have scored at least three goals in 90 minutes. 

Josep Guardiola’s men are having a very successful stretch of the season. The players made it through to the quarter-finals of the UEFA Champions League, beating German RB Leipzig 7 – 0 in the previous leg. In addition, City managed to reach the semi-finals of the Emirates FA Cup after beating Burnley FC (6 – 0), so the club has chances for three top-trophies at once.

At the beginning of March, the Citizens were struggling to score, but Erling Haaland and company broke through in the last games before the national break.  In the match against RB, the star player completed a penta-trick in less than an hour. And might have become the first player to score six goals in a single UCL match, but Guardiola replaced him in the 63rd minute. The Norwegian also scored three goals against the Championship club in the FA Cup quarter-final.

The club now has six consecutive wins in all competitions. In addition to victories in the Champions League and FA Cup, they have also beaten Crystal Palace FC (1 – 0), Newcastle United FC (2 – 0) and AFC Bournemouth (4 – 1) in the EPL. 

But it’s no secret that the UEFA Euro 2024 qualifiers are underway. Therefore, most of the players involved in the meeting have not had time to recover from their national matches. This will bring some imbalance in the preparation for the game, but it will also show the coaches’ ability to find the best solutions to the line-up in an unorthodox, but long-standing familiar situation.

Manchester City coach Pep Guardiola and top scorer Erling Haaland

Eighteen players from Man City’s roster have been called up to national teams of different ages and continents. However, two of them have not played a single minute for their countries. Goalkeeper Ederson Moraes rested on the bench in the Brazilian team’s friendly with Morocco, while striker Erling Haaland left the Norwegian team due to injury.

In fact, the team’s problem now is with the Norwegian, it is not yet clear whether he will be able to take part in the match against Liverpool. Also, the second striker from Citizens Phil Foden will not play – the Englishman has had an inflammation of the appendix.

Former Manchester City player Shaun Wright-Phillips on the importance of City vs Liverpool games:

“I think it should be at the top of the list. I don’t recall two teams going head-to-head in the title race for so many seasons, pushing each other to such heights.”

“And it wasn’t just the number of points, but also the number of goals that needed to be scored due to the goal difference concerns. Those confrontations were phenomenal.”

“Now the title fight is great too, but I don’t think the opponents have taken each other to that level. Sir Alex Ferguson and Arsene Wenger set one example and now Guardiola and Klopp are setting another when it comes to football. The game has evolved and in some ways become completely different.”

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Liverpool News & Current Form: 

Liverpool are having a rollercoaster ride this season. The Merseysiders are a modest 6th in their league table.  However, the team’s defensive performance has been less than monolithic. In their 26 EPL games, the Reds have scored 29 goals.

The team is clearly in a tailspin, and Klopp has not yet managed to solve the problem. After demolishing Manchester United FC 7 – 0 at Anfield, it looked like Liverpool would be back on the winning track and in contention for the UCL spot, but instead, they lost  0 – 1 away to Bournemouth. Then, with the same score, the Reds lost the return leg to Real Madrid CF (0 – 1) in the 1/8 finals of the Champions League, but the outcome was already known after a 2 – 5 home defeat.

It should be noted that, for all their problems, Liverpool managed to beat City in the first round of the Premier League this season 1 – 0 at home. The FA Community Shield, in which the same teams met, was also won by the Merseysiders. The Citizens managed a rematch in the 1/8 finals of the English Football League Cup, winning 3 – 2, but it was still a minor tournament. 

In this match, though, the stakes are high for both sides. Manchester City cannot let Arsenal get too far away from them, while Liverpool have very little chance of qualifying for the 2023/2024 Champions League if they lose.

The team’s first problem is fatigued players after national team games. Liverpool have delegated 12 players to various national teams, seven of whom could be considered irreplaceable in the starting line-up. Uruguayan Darwin Nunez was called up for the national team but failed to appear due to an injury. This is also a significant loss for the team in attack.

The second problem the Reds have is the poor form in which most players are in. This all leads to unstable results. The Merseyside side have alternated between good stretches and outright failures. Liverpool have not won more than two games in a row since October, but Jurgen Klopp has not suffered three straight defeats this season either.

Coach of Liverpool Jurgen Klopp and Trent Alexander-Arnold after a difficult, but successful game

Meetings between Klopp and Guardiola often turn into tactical duels in which the coaches suddenly experiment with the scheme of play.  Therefore, it remains to be seen which version of the squad the Liverpool boss has prepared. Whether it will be the version that has won only one of their last 13 Premier League games at the Etihad, or the one that beat the reigning English champions the previous season more often than any other team in the tournament’s history.

The team’s injuries are plentiful. Darwin Nunes, Thiago Alcantara, Joe Gomez and Konstantinos Tsimikas are unavailable.

Luis Diaz, who has not played since October because of a knee injury, could be available for this match. On Tuesday he had a full training session with the team. There has been no negative reaction to the strain, which means Jurgen Klopp will be able to include the winger in the squad. Diaz has played in eight games this EPL season, scoring three goals and providing two assists.

Manchester City form guide: W-W-W-W-W-W

Liverpool form guide: L-D-W-W-L-L

Manchester City vs Liverpool Head-To-Head Record: 

Manchester CityDrawLiverpool
  • February 7, 2021: Liverpool 1 – 4 Manchester City (Premier League);
  • October 3, 2021: Liverpool 2 – 2 Manchester City (Premier League);
  • April 10, 2022: Manchester City 2 – 2 Liverpool (Premier League);
  • April 16, 2022: Manchester City 2 – 3 Liverpool (FA Cup);
  • July 30, 2022: Liverpool 3 – 1 Manchester City (FA Community Shield);
  • October 16, 2022: Liverpool 1 – 0 Manchester City (Premier League);
  • December 22, 2022: Manchester City 3 – 2 Liverpool (League Cup).

Manchester City vs Liverpool Predicted XI:

Manchester City possible starting lineup (4-3-3): Ederson; Walker, Stones, Dias, Ake; De Bruyne, Rodri, Gundogan; Bernardo, Haaland, Grealish.

Liverpool possible starting lineup (4-3-3): Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Konate, Van Dijk, Robertson; Henderson, Fabinho, Elliott; Salah, Gakpo, Nunez.

Statistical preview of the match Manchester City vs Liverpool:

  • Liverpool didn’t lose in 5 of their last 7 matches against this opponent.
  • Liverpool are unbeaten in 5 of their last 7 games in the Premier League.
  • Manchester City are without a conceded goal in their last 5 games.
  • Manchester City are scoring an average of 3.80 goals per game in their last 5 games.
  • Liverpool conceded an average of 0.40 goals per game in their last 5 games.
  • Liverpool are scoring an average of 1.80 goals per game in their last 5 games.
  • City’s  First XI average age is 28.7 yrs.
  • Liverpool’s First XI average age is 27.3 yrs.
  • City’s Top scorers: Erling Haaland (28), Phil Foden (9), Julian Alvarez (5), Riyad Mahrez (5).
  • Liverpool’s Top scorers:  Mohamed Salah (11), Roberto Firmino (8), Darwin Nunez (8), Cody Gakpo (4).
  • Liverpool have scored in the first half in two of their last five games.
  • Liverpool have failed to win at the Etihad in the EPL since 2015. The last two matches at Manchester City in the Premier League ended in a draw.

What has been said before the match:

Coach Pep Guardiola about winning the Premier League title:

“I won’t cause drama if we fail to win the EPL. Nevertheless – that is our goal, nothing changes. Of course we want to win. We think we still have a chance of beating Arsenal.”

Coach Jurgen Klopp believes his team can get into the Champions League zone:

“I am convinced that Liverpool are capable of finishing in the top four. We have to enjoy football and what we do.”

“We have made great strides in recent years. We are united as a team and we know what we are worth. I am sure that we are capable of securing a place in the Champions League zone at the end of the season.”

Manchester City vs Liverpool Prediction:

The encounters between these teams tend to be quite intense: out of the last 10 meetings between Man City and Liverpool in all competitions, at least three goals in total have been registered. In addition, in four of the last five duels, both teams have been managing to critically hit the opposition’s net, which we wouldn’t rule out in this tie as well. The rivals have also been productive this season – the Citizens have scored the most goals in the EPL (67 which is 2.5 per match), with Merseyside being the 4th most prolific squad (47; 1.8 per 90 minutes). 

We expect a productive and energetic encounter, especially as the teams have been able to recharge during the international break, allowing most of the players to come into the game fresh and full of energy.

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Parimatch News staff prediction:

We say: both teams will score and the match total to be over 2.5 – Yes.