Last Updated: 13/12/18 1:13pm3:34 From Liverpool's record-breaking start to United's struggles against Big-Six opposition, we pick five essential stats ahead of the blockbuster clash at Anfield this Sunday From Liverpool's record-breaking start to United's struggles against Big-Six opposition, we pick five essential stats ahead of the blockbuster clash at Anfield this Sunday
From Liverpool's record-breaking start to United's struggles against big-six opposition, we pick five essential stats ahead of the blockbuster clash at Anfield this Sunday.
Super Sunday sees the two most successful sides in the history of English football go head to head at Anfield as Liverpool host United in the 201st competitive meeting between the clubs.Liverpool v Man Utd
See Liverpool and Man Utd go head to head on Sky Sports this weekend
Liverpool have a poor recent record against their rivals and are without a win in their last eight league meetings, including the last four at Anfield.Liverpool vs Man Utd
December 16, 2018, 3:30pm
Liverpool's last league win against United came back in March 2014 - a 3-0 win at Old Trafford under Brendan Rodgers with two goals from Steven Gerrard and one from Luis Suarez.
If Liverpool fail to win on Sunday, it will be the first time they have ever gone nine league games without a win against their greatest rivals.
Liverpool returned to the top of the Premier League table last Saturday after a 4-0 win at Bournemouth in the lunchtime kick-off and remained on top after Manchester City lost 2-0 at Chelsea later in the day.
Jurgen Klopp's side remain unbeaten and have made their best start to a top-flight season after 16 games.
Only three teams have won more points at this stage of the season and the omens are good for Liverpool fans - all three went on to win the title, including Manchester City last season.
Liverpool have been formidable in front of their fans so far this season winning six of their seven Premier League games and taking 19 points from a possible 21. They have conceded just one goal and they are yet to be trailing in a game at Anfield.
They are now unbeaten in their last 28 Premier League home games - their last defeat coming against Sam Allardyce's Crystal Palace in April 2017.
The Reds are on their longest unbeaten home run in the league since going 31 games unbeaten under Rafa Benitez - but will they continue their run this weekend?
As for United, they have struggled in games between the so-called big six sides this season and are the only team yet to record a victory in these fixtures.
They have struggled defensively against the top sides - conceding at least two goals in each of the four games they have played this season.
Their form in these fixtures is a sharp contrast to last season when only Manchester City won more points in 'big six' head to heads than Jose Mourinho's side.
United scored four goals in a league game for the first time in over a year during their 4-1 win against Fulham at Old Trafford last Saturday. However, they have kept just two clean sheets so far this campaign - those coming against Burnley and Crystal Palace
The 26 goals they have conceded is only two fewer than the 28 conceded last season and only three fewer than in Jose Mourinho's first season in charge in 2016-17.
Away from Old Trafford, United have conceded 12 goals in their last six league games and have not kept a clean sheet. Their last game on the road saw them trail 2-0 after 20 minutes at Southampton, before salvaging a 2-2 draw.
So can Liverpool maintain their unbeaten start to the season and pick up their first win in nine meetings against their bitter rivals?
Before that, we are at St. Mary's for Arsenal's trip to play Southampton from 12.30pm, and then the focus is on Anfield from 3.30pm for one of the biggest games of the Premier League season - both games are live on Sky Sports Main Event and Sky Sports Premier League.
Enjoy the games and see you next week.Play Super 6
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The Reds have suffered a double blow to their defensive ranks in December, with Gomez fracturing his leg in the 3-1 win at Burnley and Matip breaking his collarbone in the 1-0 win over Napoli.
Gomez had been one of Klopp’s key players throughout a brilliant start to the season, and Matip had produced three strong performances alongside Virgil van Dijk in his stead, but now Klopp must plan without them.
Both are not expected back until mid-to-late January, with Liverpool likely to be without both for the next seven games, and Matip for slightly longer.Fixtures Gomez & Matip Are Set to Miss
(* Matip only.)
Liverpool have conceded just six goals in the Premier League so far, the best record of any side at this stage of the season in the history of the English top flight, with this central to their success.
But without Gomez, and now Matip, the manager will be forced to largely rely on Dejan Lovren as Van Dijk’s centre-back partner, and the Croatian himself has a chequered fitness record.
So with rotation likely at some stage over the next six weeks, who can Liverpool call upon?Emergency First-Team Options
The most obvious and most likely candidate for the role of third-choice centre-back this winter is Fabinho, despite his lack of experience in the role.
Formerly a right-back, now a defensive midfielder, the Brazilian is one of the tallest players in the squad at 6’2″ (the same height as Lovren and Gomez) and though he is relatively slight he is adept at the physical side of the game.
The demands of a centre-back in Liverpool’s system are arguably closer to those fulfilled as a No. 6 at Monaco, and while this would undermine his successful adjustment period since moving to Anfield, he’s certainly capable.
This is particularly the case alongside Van Dijk, who has consistently shone with a variety of centre-back partners.
Beyond Fabinho, there are few straightforward options for centre-back, but the 5-1 win over Brighton this time last year saw Klopp’s willingness to experiment if short.
Recalling his experience at the back in November, the Dutchman explained that “it was really difficult” due to the difference in duties compared to when he had played as a centre-back in the Feyenoord academy.
“Emre did it quite well there, and I was struggling—especially in the first half, because I’d never played with three, always with four,” he said.
It would be a big gamble if Klopp were to deploy Wijnaldum and Van Dijk as his duo at the heart of defence, but it can be argued that the versatile 28-year-old is the second-best emergency option despite his lack of height at 5’9″.
Jordan Henderson could also be in the running, with his propensity to drop between the two central defenders lending him to the role, though only Xherdan Shaqiri (0.7) contests fewer aerial duels than the captain per 90 (1.2).Academy Candidates
It is doubtful that, with Van Dijk, Lovren and Fabinho available, Klopp will opt to start one of his academy players throughout this busy run, but there is a strong chance some could be called up to the first-team squad.
The standout figure there is Nat Phillips, who was a staple of Liverpool’s back line throughout pre-season, as one of only six players to feature in all nine friendlies.
But Phillips has endured injury problems of his own this season, which have limited him to just six appearances for the U23s so far, and though he made his return in a 1-0 win over Everton in November that 45-minute showing was his only outing in since September.
Another right-sided option in the U23s ranks is Conor Masterson, with the Irishman previously on the brink of his first-team debut towards the end of last season.
Like Phillips, it has been a difficult campaign for Masterson so far, as after being an unused substitute in the first five games of the season and missing the next four, he made his first appearance of 2018/19 in November.
Since then he has started every game for the U23s, however, meaning he has already featured more than Phillips, with seven outings so far, and he is certainly in a better situation in terms of fitness.
Masterson is also the more accomplished player, as a strong defender capable of bringing the ball out from the back, and he would arguably be the best fit for Klopp’s system.
Having signed a new long-term contract with the club in June, this could be his chance to impress the manager.
The demands on Van Dijk this winter are going to be high, and though the No. 4 described his fitness as “amazing” ahead of the 1-0 win over Napoli, he could require a rest at some stage.
If that is the case, Lovren would likely shift over to the left-sided role, possibly alongside Fabinho—but again, if Klopp is planning to field a makeshift side against Wolves in the third round of the FA Cup, he could turn to the academy.
George Johnston is the most suitable alternative in the U23s squad, with the Scotland youth international a natural left-footer whose no-nonsense defensive style is complemented by a fine passing range.
The 20-year-old has started and played the full 90 minutes in 16 of the young Reds’ 17 games so far this season, only missing the 7-0 thrashing at the hands of Villarreal in November as he was training with the first team.
His involvement at Melwood during the international break could give him an advantage as Klopp assesses his options, and Johnston deserves an opportunity on merit.
Unlike the senior squad, the U23s can cope with some of their centre-backs being promoted to Klopp’s ranks due to the high levels of competition within the youth setup.
If Johnston is even just required to fill in for first-team training, for example, U18s mainstay Rhys Williams is available to step up and start for the U23s, while Ki-Jana Hoever has been a regular for Critchley’s side of late.
It is unfortunate that Hoever is just 16, as in the early months since his move from Ajax in the summer he has shown he has everything required to develop into a top defender, with his approach similar to that of Gomez.
With both Gomez and Matip sidelined, the main positive is that Liverpool still have considerable depth in other areas—but it is clearly not an ideal situation.
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Liverpool FC has released the following information regarding away ticket sales for the Premier League match against Brighton and Hove Albion on Saturday January 12 at 3pm GMT.
We have received a total allocation of 3000 stand tickets for this ALL ticket fixture at the Amex Stadium.
Supporters not in possession of a ticket are urged not to travel.Ticket prices
Adult - £30
Over 65/ 18-21 years - £23
17 and under (Juniors) - £15
Within the allocation are a minimal number of tickets that are restricted in view. These tickets are discounted by £1.
Brighton and Hove Albion have advised that the ticket price includes free travel within the local area upon production of your match ticket. Click here for full details.
Please be aware that supporters in possession of concessionary tickets will be asked for ID at the turnstiles. If supporters are not able to provide the relevant ID, they will be refused entry.
Sir Kenny Dalglish Box holders, Premium Level and Centenary Club members should contact the Hospitality Department on 0151 264 2222, option 2.
Within the allocation, we have received 19 pairs of wheelchair and personal assistant tickets. Ambulant and personal assistant tickets are also available, concessions apply - please click here.
The below sales will take place ONLINE only.
Tickets will be available to season ticket holders, Official Members and Fan Card holders based on attendance at Premier League away fixtures during the 2017-18 season on the following days:
Attendance at 12 games: from 8.15am GMT on Monday December 17 until 10.45am Tuesday December 18.
Supporters are guaranteed a ticket during this sale and can purchase one ticket per person, up to a maximum of ten tickets per transaction.
The following sales will then take place on a first come first served basis, subject to availability, and supporters can purchase one ticket per person up to a maximum of four tickets per transaction.
Attendance at 11 or more games: from 11am GMT until 1.45pm on Tuesday December 18.
Attendance at 10 or more games: from 2pm GMT on Tuesday December 18 until 10.45am on Wednesday December 19.
Attendance at 9 or more games: from 11am GMT on Wednesday December 19.
Should there be any tickets remaining following the initial sales, Liverpool FC will make a further announcement. Supporters are advised to check here for sale updates.
For TICKET FULFILMENT (Delivery & Collection of Tickets) click here
For COACH TRAVEL click here
For VISITING SUPPORTERS GUIDE click here
For AWAY SUPPORT INFORMATION click here
For GENERAL INFORMATION click here
For TICKET OFFICE OPENING TIMES click here
Book tickets now to meet Liverpool legend Alan Kennedy at a special Q&A session at Anfield this Christmas and you'll save 20 per cent.
Don’t miss your chance to sit back and relax in one of the Main Stand’s hospitality lounges and listen to a Reds icon's personal memories and dressing-room tales of his time at the club.
You will have the opportunity to ask Alan questions you may have and meet him after the event - which takes place on Saturday December 22 - for photos and autographs.
Your visit also includes the LFC Stadium Tour, with highlights including the home and away dressing rooms, the famous This Is Anfield sign and the players’ tunnel.
You will also stop by the Liverpool FC Story museum to see all five European Cups and the Steven Gerrard Exhibition, the legendary former captain’s personal collection of footballing memorabilia.
The Legends Q&A with Alan Kennedy takes place on Saturday December 22 at 10.45am GMT and 12.15pm.
Prices and how to book
Tickets are usually priced at £40 for adults, £30 for students or seniors, and £20 for children under 16 (must be accompanied by a paying adult). Use the discount code LEGEND20 to save 20 per cent (alid on the Legends Q&A with Alan Kennedy on December 22 only).
Your ticket includes entry to the Liverpool FC Story, the club’s interactive museum, and the Steven Gerrard Collection exhibition. The Q&A lasts approximately 60 minutes.
To book, click here and choose from either the 10.45am or 12.15pm time slot.
Andy Robertson has been nominated for the Champions League Player of the Week award - vote for Liverpool's left-back now.
The No.26 put in a typically relentless display as the Reds beat Napoli 1-0 at Anfield on Tuesday to seal their place in the last 16 of the competition.
And his performance has been recognised by UEFA, who have pitted him against Neymar (Paris Saint-Germain), Leroy Sane (Manchester City) and Guillaume Hoarau (Young Boys) for their weekly performance prize, which is decided by a fan poll.
Man United suffered a 2-1 loss to Valencia just four days before their trip to take on Liverpool, with Jose Mourinho confirming three starters for Anfield.
The Reds play host to their long-term rivals on Sunday as they look to keep up their excellent form and maintain their position at the top of the Premier League.
Jurgen Klopp‘s side are now on a run of four consecutive wins, and six in a row on the domestic stage, having gone unbeaten in 16 games in the league so far for their best-ever start.
Conversely, United sit sixth in the table, 16 points below Liverpool and have won just two of their last five in all competitions—and one in their last five in the league.
They did, however, have the luxury of a final Champions League group stage clash safe in the knowledge they had already qualified for the last 16, though a win in Valencia on Wednesday night would have sealed top spot.
Mourinho made eight changes at the Estadio Mestella, but still named the likes of Eric Bailly, Marcos Rojo, Paul Pogba, Fred, Juan Mata and Romelu Lukaku in a very strong XI.
He witnessed another miserable performance from his side, however, as an early strike from Carlos Soler and a Phil Jones own goal just after half-time gave Valencia a commanding lead.
This was exacerbated by the withdrawal of Rojo at the break through injury, with Mourinho bringing on Ashley Young, and later Jesse Lingard and Marcus Rashford.
His efforts to turn the tide were rewarded with an improved display, and Young set up Rashford to score in the 87th minute, but it was too late for United and they limped to a 2-1 loss.
Speaking to the Manchester Evening News after the game, Mourinho confirmed Young, Lingard and Rashford would all start on Sunday, saying: “You have only to find eight more.”
Two of those eight will no doubt be David De Gea and Nemanja Matic, who were both rested in midweek, but the United manager continued to explain the problems he faced in terms of team selection.
“Smalling is injured, Lindelof is injured, Darmian is injured, Martial is injured, Dalot is injured, the only two players I could bring and didn’t was De Gea and Matic,” he explained.
He added that bar Rojo, the rest of the side who started in Valencia “have a chance to play Sunday,” and of those we are likely to see Jones, Bailly, Pogba, Mata, Lukaku and Antonio Valencia.
Regardless, this represents a weak United side in comparison to previous clashes with Liverpool, and with his ‘fringe’ players failing to perform in Europe, they could be low on confidence this weekend.
The Reds would be remiss to underestimate United, but it will be interesting to see how Klopp approaches the game, and whether he opts to field his 4-2-3-1 for the first time in a ‘big’ game.
Man United XI vs. Valencia: Romero; Valencia, Bailly, Jones, Rojo (Young 46′); Fellaini, Fred (Rashford 57′), Pogba, Pereira, Mata; Lukaku (Lingard 69′)
Subs not used: Grant, Herrera, Garner, Greenwood
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Critics questioned the wisdom of manager Jurgen Klopp spending £65million on the summer purchase of the Brazil international but the 26-year-old has already repaid a large chunk of that transfer fee.
He made a brilliant save from Everton midfielder Andre Gomes in the Merseyside derby which allowed them to win the game with a late goal and pulled another one out the bag, again in added time, to deny a Napoli equaliser on Tuesday which would have ended Liverpool’s Champions League campaign.
“That’s why he’s a goalkeeper, to save it,” joked Wijnaldum.
“It was a really good save, with that save he brought us to the last 16.”
It is why Liverpool have enjoyed the best start to a season in their history and are top of table by a point from defending champions Manchester City.
“He did it almost every match: someone is through on goal and you think they are going to score and then Ali is there to make a save,” added Wijnaldum.
“He has helped us a lot and I hope he can perform until the end of the season and continue making important saves for us.
“He already gave us confidence he is a good goalkeeper. It is always difficult to stop balls, for example the one against Everton: if that one had gone in no-one would have blamed him but he saved it.
“Against Napoli also it was difficult to stop that ball but he managed to stop it and we are happy so of course it gives confidence.
“We have a lot of clean sheets and the saves he makes are really crucial; the moment he makes the saves and how he makes the saves wins us games.”
Liverpool are the only remaining unbeaten team in England’s top five divisions but Wijnaldum does not believe they are invincible and must maintain their work-rate to preserve that record.
“Invincible? No, not really. We know we have to do a lot to not lose games and even more to win it,” he said.
“We know we have to give a good performance every week to continue the run we are in.
“I don’t really think we are invincible and if we think that we have a manager that would put both feet on the ground.”
The next test comes on Sunday at home to arch-rivals Manchester United, who despite already being 16 points behind in seventh place will pose a threat at Anfield.
Wijnaldum believes Jose Mourinho’s side are undergoing a blip and are in a false position, which is why they will not underestimate them.
“Things can happen, everyone can have a bad season,” he said.
“I think the year before I came Liverpool finished eighth so those things can happen. That does not mean they are not a good team with good players.
“Last season with the same players they finished second. One season goes well, one season a little bit more difficult.
“It doesn’t mean they have a bad team: they have good players, a good manager, and they know how to manage games and win games – or not to lose games. It is going to be difficult.”
Liverpool's six potential opponents in the Champions League last 16 have now been confirmed.
The Reds booked their place in the knockout rounds of Europe’s elite club competition with a hard-fought 1-0 win over Napoli at Anfield.
Jürgen Klopp’s men finished second behind Paris Saint-Germain in Group C, meaning they will be paired with a winner from one of the other groups in the tournament during the draw at 11am GMT on Monday December 17.
At this stage, Liverpool cannot face PSG or a team from their own country - in this case, Manchester City - so they will meet one of the following six sides next year.
There was joy for Liverpool FC Women after they beat Reading FC Women FC 5-4 on penalties in the group stages of the Continental Tyres Cup on Wednesday night.
With the tie ending in a 1-1 draw after 90 minutes, the Reds received an extra point for prevailing in the spot-kicks.
Goalkeeper Fran Kitching was the hero as she saved from Remi Allen in the shootout while captain Sophie Bradley-Auckland netted the decisive penalty.
After Sunday’s 2-2 draw with Reading in the Women’s Super League, Reds boss Vicky Jepson decided to give her squad players a chance with Kitching, Leandra Little and Yana Daniels handed a place in the starting XI.
After a goalless first half at Adams Park, the home side nearly took the lead when Fara Williams saw her effort strike the bar.
Kitching was then called into action as she made a superb stop to deny former Red Natasha Harding, but Reading were not to be denied and took the lead on 63 minutes through Rachel Furness.
Two minutes later Jepson’s side were level and it was another fine effort from Courtney Sweetman-Kirk who found the net from the edge of the penalty area.
The Reds then got a morale-boosting victory in the penalty shootout as they won 5-4.
Liverpool FC Women are back in action on Sunday when they host Everton in the Continental Tyres Cup at Prenton Park, with kick-off set for 12 noon GMT.
Liverpool FC Women: Kitching, Little, Robe, Matthews, Rodgers, Bradley-Auckland, C Murray, Coombs (Fahey, 61), Sweetman-Kirk (Thomas, 80), Linnett (Clarke, 45), Daniels.
'Inside Anfield' takes you behind the scenes of the latest in a long line of Liverpool's memorable European nights.
Our video features exclusive footage filmed before, during and after the Reds' 1-0 victory over Napoli, with LFCTV GO's cameras having been granted access to areas of the stadium including the players' tunnel.
Mohamed Salah's sensational first-half goal decided a keenly-fought Champions League contest and ensured Jürgen Klopp's side will be in Monday's draw for the last 16.
Watch the story of Liverpool 1-0 Napoli from a different angle above.
Matip went straight to hospital after the Reds’ 1-0 win over Napoli on Tuesday night to have scans on a shoulder injury he picked up late in the game.
Initially it was reported to be merely a precaution and speaking post-match Jurgen Klopp said he was unaware of any issue for the defender.
However, it has now been confirmed that he requires an operation for a fractured collarbone and is therefore expected to be sidelined for “up to six weeks” – depending on how his recovery goes.
It’s a major blow given the timing of the season and with Gomez already out for a similar timeframe.
It’s a bitter blow for the player as an individual, who has had to be patient for his chance this season but performed well in these three consecutive appearances.
Klopp could be facing somewhat of a defensive injury crisis for Sunday’s home game against Man United, with Trent Alexander-Arnold also picking an injury in the latter stages against Napoli and James Milner suffering with cramp.
It’s hoped that Milner is fit enough to start at right-back, while Lovren will have to come into the side alongside Van Dijk in the centre.
Beyond that, Klopp’s options are extremely limited. Nathaniel Clyne hasn’t started a league game since May and only recently returned to training again.
Young centre-back Nathaniel Phillips, who featured in pre-season, has also recently returned to training and could well find himself in the first-team mix this winter.