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Man United not fit to lace Liverpool’s boots in combined XI

| 15.03.2014

Each and every footballing Sunday is a Super one as far as Sky Sports is concerned, but when Manchester United face Liverpool next, with the north London derby on the same day, it really will be.

A struggling United side, at 7/5, are the ever-so-slight favourites to win the match due to their status as the home team, with Liverpool 9/5 and a draw available at 5/2.

But if our mix and match XI is anything to go by then that plump price on a Reds win should be gobbled up like the last mince pie at Christmas, with only four Red Devils rated good enough to disrupt the Liverpool presence.


David De Gea gets the nod in net as Liverpool’s Simon Mignolet’s tendency to flap at crosses is part of the Reds’ vulnerability at the back.

Despite that vulnerability Glen Johnson and Martin Skrtel still make it into the back four, with the former picked for superior consistency over Rafael and the latter in the side for his goal threat from set pieces.

They are joined by Nemanja Vidic and Patrice Evra, a pair who United will surely miss when they finally depart Old Trafford.

It’s a Liverpool-based central midfield offering as Steven Gerrard is playing better than ever in his deeper role and Jordan Henderson better than anything David Moyes has to offer to partner him.

In the front three, Wayne Rooney occupies the number 10 role and should be licking his lips at the thought of linking up with Liverpool’s Raheem Sterling and Daniel Sturridge on the wings.

While Sturridge isn’t necessarily a winger, playing ahead of Johnson on the right means he can drift infield to allow the full-back to fully explore his attacking instincts. On the opposite side, you only have to look at Ashley Young’s dwindling England career to see how good a season Sterling has had.

What would have normally been billed as a bout of Benn-Eubank proportions, Robin van Persie’s slide from integral status to that of a man who probably eats lunch on his own at Carrington, means Luis Suarez wins easily.

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

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Matt Wiggins

No idyllic sound comes close to leather on willow for Matt, whose previous experience includes stints with Spin Magazine and Surrey County Cricket Club. It's not just cricket that interests him though, with football, golf, tennis and any American sport not played on ice all high on his list of favourites.