Why I fancy Liverpool to eliminate Manchester City tonight


Coming back from a 3-0 defeat in the first leg is almost impossible.

It’s only been done twice before in the Champions League era.

Saturday’s game at the Etihad? City were 2-0 up at half-time against Manchester United but then Sanchez and Pogba took over and United won  3-2.

Kompany and Otamendi were everywhere they should not have been.What they did was ridiculous. You have to defend as a unit. A back five is a unit where everyone knows his job and reacts automatically to each threat.

Raheem Sterling missed two easy chances. He hit both over the crossbar from similar positions. If Raheem could finish like Aguero, City would have thrashed United 6-0. Nobody is sharper in front of goal than Kun Aguero and nobody has scored so many decisive goals.

One of my theories is that every football match contains the previous match.

Having been smashed 3-0 at Anfield, City took a 2-0 lead against United and then lost 3-2. Having coughed up three goals to Liverpool in 21 minutes, and two to Pogba in two minutes, City could be frail again tonight.They can be fragile and they’re now under a lot of pressure.

Mo Salah trained yesterday after treatment for a groin injury.

Will Salah start? I doubt it.

Klopp says, “We have to be our best again.”

He also said, “There is still a lot of work to do.”

Virgil Van Dijk has already proved he was worth waiting for.

The giant Dutchman has made a huge difference quickly. Some big centrebacks are not commanding but this guy is a leader.

What else? Not a lot. Just that I was furious when UEFA came up with this draw. It felt improbable and punitive. Three La Liga teams didn’t draw each other but two English clubs did?

I didn’t want to see Liverpool v Manchester City in a Champions League quarter-final last week.

And I don’t want to see Man City v Liverpool tonight.

But I’ll be glued to it because I agree with Graeme Souness: These are the games you live for.

The match starts at 7.45pm and I fancy Liverpool because Jurgen Klopp has beaten Pep Guardiola more often than any other manager.

Klopp’s Milner-Henderson-Oxlade midfield was exemplary last week. And his fast young backs stretched City.

Klopperpool overwhelmed City with speed, energy and momentum.That 3-0 reverse damaged them and contributed to their home defeat in the Manchester derby.