Former Premier League star Michael Owen has stated his prediction for Sunday’s much-awaited clash between Liverpool and Manchester City at Anfield.
The Reds have been largely inconsistent over the past six weeks, picking up only two wins from the last eight league games.
Their poor run of form has dropped them from first to fourth on the table and they are now seven points behind leaders City, who have a game in hand.
Their title defence has faded in this period and their hopes could end if they suffer a defeat against Pep Guardiola’s side this weekend.
City are in a tremendous run of form with nine wins on the bounce and they have not conceded a single goal in the process.
The Reds could be boosted by the returns of Sadio Mane, Fabinho and Alisson while Ozan Kabak is in line to make his debut.
Still, former Reds striker Owen has predicted the Premier League game to end all-square at 1-1 which was the case in the reverse fixture at the Etihad Stadium. Here is what he said while speaking to the bookmakers BetVictor’s blog:
“This is a must-win for Liverpool – anything other than a victory would be a real dent in their aspirations to retain the title,” he said.
“City arrive here in great form, although I do think that deep down, Pep would happily take a point home.
“With that in mind, I think City could give up some territory. From their point of view, if they get one on the counter, then great. If not, a point isn’t a bad result.
“Usually in these types of matches, a noisy Anfield crowd would play a huge part. With that missing, I think it only plays further into City’s hands.
“So, I can see this being cagey, and I wouldn’t be surprised if it ended all-square.”
The Reds have lost two league games on the bounce at Anfield after previously going 68 top-flight matches without a defeat.
The defence has looked vulnerable with their three main centre-backs in Virgil van Dijk, Joe Gomez and Joel Matip out injured for the season.
Kabak should prove a much-needed addition at the back, but Klopp’s side may still need to be quick off the blocks against City to register a positive result.
The Merseyside giants are unbeaten in the league against City at Anfield since 2003 (17 games) and they can draw inspiration from recent big victories over their close rivals.
Stats from Transfermarkt.com