Liverpool vs Manchester United preview, betting tips and prediction: Mourinho to mastermind visitors victoryPublished October 10, 2017
Manchester United to win with BTTS @ 9/2 with Betfair
Score draw @ 10/3 with Betfair
Manchester United to win 1-0 @ 10/1 with Betfair
Coming into this game, Manchester United will be confident of taking all three points. Although Liverpool were unbeaten in meetings with the top six at Anfield last season, they only have one win in their last seven games and are meeting a side yet to lose competitively this season. Jose Mourinho’a Red Devils have maintained the boss’ signature defensive strength, but in Romelu Lukaku they have a striker who cannot stop scoring. That will spell danger for Liverpool, who are stuck in a pattern of conceding from defensive errors and spurning countless chances to score.
Mourinho is a pragmatic manager at the best of times, but in the bigger games he goes that extra mile. He is no stranger to nullifying Liverpool, having done so in the 0-0 draw away last season and also with Chelsea on a now infamous afternoon for the Reds and former captain Steven Gerrard. The Portuguese will know exactly how to stop them, most likely by narrowing the pitch as much as possible to stop Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane, while simultaneously squeezing out Philippe Coutinho, who can hurt teams when given space as he showed the one time Newcastle let their guard down in the 1-1 draw at St James’ Park before the international break.
Don’t expect United to dominate the ball, but do they will be a threat on the counter attack through the pace and power of Lukaku, Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial. The more they can pin the Reds back, especially in wide areas, the more their chances of upsetting the hosts will increase.
Conceding just two goals so far this season suggests United are going to look to keep the score down. Traditionally, Liverpool are known for their attacking quality, which offsets their defensive frailties, but they have scored nine fewer goals than their bitter rivals so far this season, conceding ten more. The great thing about games like this is they offer value either way, but United will be favourites to win it narrowly. Mourinho’s game plan should give them the base, and they could steal in on the counter attack. A 1-0 win seems a good bet at 10/1 with Betfair, but they could even outscore Liverpool with BTTS at 9/2. The Reds will threaten with their dynamic attacking options, meaning a draw may seem like a likely outcome, too.
Key battle: Alberto Moreno vs Marcus Rashford
As mentioned above, a great outlet for United will be their pace high up the pitch. Without the injured Paul Pogba, they will require penetration out wide, and Rashford is perfect for that because he loves taking players on. This battle with Moreno will be particularly interesting because the Spaniard will afford Rashford space but has immense pace to help him get out of tough situations.
It will be a similar story on the right with Joe Gomez. He has filled in for Nathaniel Clyne well, even setting the pace in attack at Newcastle, but Martial will cause him real problems if he starts. The fullbacks will be the first to help Liverpool stretch the play in an attempt to pull the visitors out of their rigid, solid shape.