Venue: Anfield (pictured on the right)
Kick off: 12:45
United will travel to Merseyside tomorrow where Liverpool fans are expected to give Patrice Evra a scorching reception all because of a certain Luis Suarez racially abusing him earlier this season. However, if you enjoy Football Betting, United are currently 15/8 to win with Liverpool at 6/4.
Form: After knocking Manchester City out of the FA Cup at the start of the year, United look to do the same with Liverpool in order to progress into the quarter-final. Last weekend, the Reds beat Arsenal 2-1 at the Emirates Stadium and I was pleased with the overall performance, although, it could be improved. Injuries, however, have held us back and we’re continuing to be disrupted by them occurring so often. Liverpool, on the other hand, did reasonably well earlier this week, knocking our noisy neighbours out of the Carling Cup. And with Steven Gerrard back in the squad they look a stronger force and we all know how much they, as a team, raise their game when we’re in town. However, Dalglish’s men don’t carry enough of a threat in front of goal and it becomes even more difficult with Suarez absent due to suspension.
Team news: Wayne Rooney, Michael Carrick, Phil Jones and Luis Nani are all in a race against time to be fit, with the latter realistically expected to recover from knocks picked up at Arsenal, last weekend. With all of those players absent, I wouldn’t be surprised to see Dimitar Berbatov, Javier Hernandez, Ji-sung Park and Paul Scholes feature. Liverpool, I believe, will stick to a 4-5-1 formation with Craig Bellamy playing as the lone striker while Dirk Kuyt works on the right.
Line-up prediction: Anders Lindegaard; Rafael da Silva, Chris Smalling, Jonny Evans, Patrice Evra; Antonio Valencia, Michael Carrick, Paul Scholes, Ryan Giggs; Dimitar Berbatov, Javier Hernandez.
Judging by my line-up prediction, I can’t see Ferguson resting too many players despite the Premier League being our main priority. Scholes & Carrick have worked well recently and Hernandez & Berbatov did brilliantly together, last season. However, it’s important that we win all the battles in midfield and try not to bypass the central area because it would be far too easy for Liverpool to doubled-up on either wingers – City did it during their 6-1 win over us. The two player I have selected out wide will offer Evra and Rafael lots of support which may prove important with Liverpool’s Johnson and Enrique fancying an attack every now and again.
Liverpool will try and do everything in the center of the pitch, where United have looked below average in recent seasons. A leader-like performance from Patrice Evra would send a message around our team setting a real United tone, so come on you Reds!
Scoreline prediction: 2-0 win.