Man United v Liverpool: Red Devils poised to edge thriller

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Sunday afternoon’s clash between Manchester United and Liverpool is shaping up to be a cracker, and nothing like the 0-0 seen in the reverse fixture.

Back then in mid-October, United boss Jose Mourinho was still figuring out his best XI, but three months on the Red Devils are flying.

Currently enjoying six-game winning run in the Premier League, in all competitions United have won their last nine.

In contrast, Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool are yet to win in 2017.

The Anfield outfit were held by Sunderland a fortnight ago, before Plymouth battled to a 0-0 draw in the Emirates FA Cup.

And a lacklustre performance in midweek saw Southampton claim the first-leg of their EFL Semi-Final 1-0.

Throw in the absence of Sadio Mane on international duty, and the bookies have deemed Liverpool outsiders at 13/5.

United are 6/5 favourites, with a draw at 23/10.

Mourinho’s success of late has been built on defence, with United conceding only seven goals in their last 11 league games.

But no team have scored more goals than Klopp’s men this season, so the 16/5 on Man United to win and both teams to score looks superb value.

A trend of United recently has been to score late on, with their last three second-half performances ending 2-0. A Draw/Man United on the Half-Time/Full-Time looks promising at 4/1.

Now, there are potential match-winners seemingly at every turn for this contest.

Liverpool may be without Mane, but the return of Philippe Coutinho is a huge boost to the Merseysiders.

The Brazilian has scored five goals and set-up five assists from just 13 games, and is 10/1 to score first.

But it’s Zlatan Ibrahmovic who is favourite to break the deadlock at 7/2. The Swede has quickly become a United favourite, and has 13 league strikes already this season.

Set to make his return to the squad from illness, Ibrahimovic has scored nine goals in his last nine Premier League appearances.

Henrikh Mkhitaryan is sure to be well-backed too, at 6/1 first scorer and 19/10 anytime, but it’s another United star who loves this fixture.

Juan Mata has scored four times against Liverpool, and with two goals in three games, the Spaniard is in fine form. The former Chelsea forward is 15/2 to score first and 12/5 anytime.

Klopp will be hoping Roberto Firmino brings his A-game, and the Brazilian is 8/1 to net first and 14/5 anytime.

But it’s Daniel Sturridge who the bookies deem Liverpool’s most likely hope, with 6/1 on offer for the England international to make it 1-0, and 21/10 to net at any stage.

Adam Lallana is another hoping to have a say on proceedings this weekend. The England international is enjoying best campaign yet and is 9/1 to score first, or 31/10 anytime.

And finally, we haven’t even mentioned the world’s most expensive player, Paul Pogba.

The Frenchman has scored or assisted four goals in his last four league games, and can be backed at 13/2 to net first or 21/10 anytime.

With so much talent on stage, this promises to be one of the games of the season. But it’s the hosts who should have the edge.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing

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