By Neil Leverett
- The Premier League returns after the Emirates FA Cup, as Manchester United host old foe Liverpool in a massive clash at Old Trafford
- Reds looking to end United’s winning league run under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and remain top of the standings
- AFC Bournemouth host Wolverhampton Wanderers on Saturday, with both sides looking to climb the table
PREMIER LEAGUE, UK – The top flight swings back into action, as Liverpool face a stern test of their title credentials with a trip to face Manchester United on Sunday afternoon.
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Game of the Week: Manchester United vs Liverpool (Sunday, 16:30)
These two sides have played out some memorable Premier League classics and as the two foes meet again with the stakes higher than ever for the visitors, Sunday afternoon at Old Trafford is set to be a titanic encounter in Manchester.
This weekend’s meeting is remarkable for two reasons; Firstly, the Red Devils almost whole resurgence under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, and two, for Liverpool having let slip their lead in the title race to just three points – with this clash their game in hand on Manchester City.
With the Citizens breathing down their neck then, a trip to the Theatre of Dreams is not high on the Reds list after a frustrating evening against Bayern Munich in the UEFA Champions League in midweek.
Having seen their lead slip in the battle to end their wait for a Premier League crown, the result here could very well be seismic. This game feels pivotal in the destination of league silverware come May, and if the visitors can overcome this hurdle to psychological momentum would swing back in the favour of Jurgen Klopp‘s men.
Toppling a United side that have won every league game with Solskjaer at the helm – particularly at home – would a monster feat for Liverpool to achieve, and the battle to see whose attack will win out is going to be fascinating.
With the hype surrounding meetings in the past, there is always the possibility that again the game could fail to live up to expectation. However, both these sides, with Marcus Rashford, Paul Pogba, Anthony Martial, Sadio Mane, Roberto Firmino and indeed, Mohamed Salah on show, will surely not fail to deliver a potential classic for the ages.
As for the winner, that is a far tougher call. Under normal circumstances, a draw would be a disastrous result given the title picture, but given United’s form of late, that might not be a terrible result here. Which, I feel, will be the outcome after a pulsating encounter.
Prediction: Manchester United 2-2 Liverpool
One to Watch: AFC Bournemouth vs Wolverhampton Wanderers (Saturday, 15:00)
This week’s one to watch sees two sides very much looking for a top-half finish, as an upwardly mobile Wolves side arrive on the south coast to face AFC Bournemouth, looking to pick off a slightly unripened Cherries outfit.
Away from home, Eddie Howe‘s men have begun to fall apart. However, at the Vitality Stadium, their home form is the exact juxtaposition in terms having beaten both West Ham and Chelsea to nil in their last two league outings on home turf.
The visitors from the Black Country have gone four games unbeaten since their lesson taught against the champions Manchester City last month, and with Nuno Espirito Santo‘s men having reached the last eight of the FA Cup, Wolves are now eyeing a place in Europe on two separate fronts this season.
Whilst Bournemouth have become somewhat travel sick in recent months, Wolves are now a extremely dangerous side on the road which makes this contest all the more interesting and likely to produce goals.
Callum Wilson remains out which is a big blow to the Cherries, but the hosts have ample enough threat to cause problems in particular in the wide areas. In games with similar methods and approaches for sides who both have built from their experiences in the lower leagues of English football, there is the possibility that the duo cancel each other out.
However with a relatively small pitch to stretch play, like at Old Trafford there should be goals here and again, a draw may be on the cards.
Prediction: AFC Bournemouth 2-2 Wolverhampton Wanderers
Premier League Gameweek 27 Game of the Week sees Manchester United host Liverpool at Old Trafford on Sunday afternoon.
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