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Manchester United is more disorganized at Anfield this time

In January 2016, Jurgen Klopp became Liverpool’s coach after three months. A match against Manchester United was looming. Klopp referred to that match at Anfield as ‘super salt.’ Actually, the English Premier League feels quite tasteless without the Liverpool-United rivalry. However, Klopp didn’t savor that match. Manchester United secured a 1-0 win through Wayne Rooney’s goal in the 78th minute.

Since Bob Paisley in 1975, no Liverpool coach had managed to win the first match against United after taking charge. This means Klopp is not alone; coaches like Kenny Dalglish, Rafael Benitez, Gerard Houllier, and Brendan Rodgers have been in the same boat. Yet, in Klopp’s nearly eight-year tenure at Liverpool, the pendulum has swung back and forth against United at Anfield. Especially when these two teams face each other at Anfield. The Premier League resumes tomorrow—the fixture at Anfield will host Manchester United as guests.

Under Klopp’s tenure at Liverpool since January 2016, the club hasn’t managed to win against United after that match. What’s more surprising is that in these eight matches, United couldn’t score a goal! The only match where United scored was in December 2018, facing a 3-1 defeat against Liverpool, with Jesse Lingard netting. After that win, Klopp said, “I’m not here to humiliate Mourinho.” But within 48 hours of that defeat at Anfield, coach Jose Mourinho was undisturbed in his role at United.

United hasn’t been able to turn the tide in their favor yet. This further amplifies the sense of inferiority at Anfield for United. Especially in the last two seasons. In April 2022, United faced a humiliating 4-0 defeat at Anfield. Coach Ralph Rangnick commented after that loss at Old Trafford, “Liverpool is six years ahead of us.”

However, comparing the defeat in April to the one last season doesn’t bring much difference. Last March, United faced a devastating 7-0 defeat at Anfield. This is the biggest margin of victory in the history of these two historical clubs’ rivalry. In 1895, when United was known as Newton Heath, they suffered a 7-1 loss against Klopp’s Liverpool.

Mohamed Salah, Liverpool’s star, also relishes facing United. He has scored 12 goals in 12 meetings. No opposition has seen as many goals from Salah. Club legend Steven Gerrard scored nine goals against United.

Liverpool leads the league table with 37 points from 16 matches. United, with the same number of matches, stands sixth with 27 points. Most statistics favor Liverpool ahead of tomorrow’s match. On the contrary, United faces more setbacks. This season, Liverpool has won all seven home matches in the Premier League, scoring 21 goals. United, amid European struggles, failed to win in their last 13 away league games. Captain Bruno Fernandes is also unavailable for United due to injury.

Predicting who will take the lead in tomorrow’s rivalry match is easily guessed.

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