Those clever cats at Sky Sports are dubbing this one the ‘Red Derby’, which is what happens when you let four-year-olds take up key positions in your marketing department. Nonetheless, this is one of the most intense rivalries in English football – perhaps on the planet, for that matter – and its lustre will only slightly be diminished by its bizarre presence on a Monday evening.
These are good times to be a Liverpool supporter, with Jurgen Klopp’s side looking as likely to emulate the ‘Suarez-Sturridge-Sterling’ vintage as any other Reds side has previously. With victories over Arsenal, Chelsea and Leicester already this term, they must be full of confidence.
The Jose Mourinho revolution at Old Trafford is yet to get going really, and his side seem to take one step forward (beating Southampton and Leicester) and then follow it with an immediate step backwards (losing to Manchester City and drawing with Stoke). The Special One seems to have stumbled across a winning formula in midfield with Ander Herrera looking exceptional alongside Paul Pogba and Juan Mata, and with Marcus Rashford as sharp as ever on the flanks this United side is threatening to explode into life any time now.
Will it be at Anfield on Monday night? Let’s take a look at the betting tips:
Liverpool vs Manchester United Betting Tips – Match Winner
What we like about this Liverpool side is that they are capable of winning beautifully (4-1 over Leicester, 5-1 over Hull) and ugly (2-1 over Swansea and Chelsea), and that, dear reader, is the key to winning titles or at least finishing in the top four.
Much of their good work is built on a sturdy midfield foundation, with Jordan Henderson – much maligned but underrated nevertheless – providing the platform upon which Gigi Wijnaldum and Adam Lallana can build.
But there’s the rub….Wijnaldum and Lallana will both miss this game through injury.
That’s a catastrophic blow for the Merseysiders, with their likely replacements – Lucas and Emre Can – offering little in the way of attacking presence. That will mean that the supply to the frontmen will be easier to cut off, and United’s back four will have an easier evening’s work than they may otherwise have been expecting.
With three on three in the middle of the park this could turn into one of those old-fashioned midfield battleground matches, where little chances are created and risks avoided. Both teams have players who can pop up with goals or deliver moments of magic, and that could be what decides this game.
The Red Devils have won on three of their last five visits to Anfield, and will hold no fear accordingly. The loss of Wijnaldum and Lallana is catastrophic but not terminal, but we’re certainly leaning towards United as a result. Take them with a Double Chance (8/11, Betfred) or Draw No Bet (11/8, Coral) backing depending on how risqué you’re feeling.
Liverpool vs Manchester United Betting Tips – Side Bets
Neither of these sides have hidden their light under a bushel as far as goals are concerned: Liverpool are the joint top-goalscorers in the Premier League so far this campaign, while United have scored in every single outing to date.
But here’s where we go slightly off piste and say we’re backing Under 2.5 Goals despite this intelligence. Why? Three reasons:
- There’s so much at stake – in terms of league points and bragging rights – that creativity tends to be stifled
- Liverpool will miss the probing of Adam Lallana and forward motion of Gigi Wijnaldum massively
- Jose Mourinho is renowned for being ‘pragmatic’, shall we say, in big matches
It won’t be to everybody’s tastes, but we’ll take the 21/20 on offer at BetVictor.
But that’s not to say we don’t think there won’t be any goals, and we have a sneaky feeling that the chief architect might just be one Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
How often has he come up with big goals in the past for PSG and Sweden? He netted against both Chelsea and Manchester City in major Champions League matches last term, and he bagged three in two to send his country to Euro 2016 ahead of their Nordic neighbours Denmark in that two-legged play off.
It might be an ego thing or a natural propensity to come up with the goods when it matters most; either way, don’t be surprised if Zlatan nets on Monday night. At 2/1 with Betfair, there’s just a trace of value.