Manchester City v Liverpool Betting Preview
Back a draw between these two in-from sides
Unbeaten in their opening three Premier League games, Manchester City head into Saturday’s clash with Liverpool still favourites to win the league. They’ve won two and drawn one so far, leaving them level on points with Liverpool, Huddersfield and West Brom on seven, sitting fourth on goal difference. Pep Guardiola’s men recorded a convincing 2-0 win over Brighton on the opening day before being held by Everton at home, but a last-gasp winner against Bournemouth last time out got them back to winning ways.
They were far from perfect against the Cherries, but City’s perseverance was clear to see in their 2-1 win over Eddie Howe’s men, a vital trait for any title contenders. The victory was marred by Raheem Sterling’s questionable red card following the winning goal, but Guardiola will be confident his side can put in a big performance in the English winger’s absence. They’ve scored five goals in three matches, with Gabriel Jesus and Sergio Aguero looking dangerous, and Jurgen Klopp will need to set his Liverpool side up to defend against the threat they pose. Unbeaten in their last 16 home matches in all competitions, Manchester City will most likely prove hard to beat here.
Liverpool have enjoyed an identical start to City, winning two and drawing one of their opening three fixtures, however their superior goal difference leaves them second in the table after three games. They humiliated a very poor Arsenal side in their latest outing, and that 4-0 win will give them a lot of confidence heading to the home of the 2013/14 Premier League Champions.
They were held by Watford on the opening weekend, having to settle for 3-3 draw despite looking very impressive on the attack – however not so impressive at the back. Their 1-0 win over Crystal Palace as well as their aggregate victory over Hoffenheim in Champions League qualifying certainly settled their early nerves, and that was evident against Arsenal a fortnight ago. They’ve scored eight goals in their opening three league matches, and have won four of their last five away from home – I’m backing them to take a point away from the Etihad this weekend, and if Mane, Salah and Firmino all fire again they could even expect to take more.
Liverpool are unbeaten in their last five Premier League meetings with Manchester City, winning four and drawing one. Last season’s fixture at the Etihad ended in a 1-1 draw, with Liverpool winning the previous season’s encounter 4-1. City have failed to score more than one goal in any of their last six meetings with Liverpool, with the Reds netting 12 times in the same number of games.
To score – Roberto Firmino 13/8
The Brazilian forward is bang in form this season, and with two goals and two assists in the league so far, he looks very dangerous indeed. He’s been on the scoresheet in the Champions League, netting in Liverpool’s second-leg 4-2 win over Hoffenheim a fortnight ago. Firmino also has two goals against Manchester City to his name, both coming in the 2015/16 season, including one in Liverpool’s 4-1 thumping at the Etihad. Considering the form he’s in and the support he’s got around him I fancy Firmino to find the net at any time on Saturday, priced at 13/8.
Both teams to score – Yes 1/2
These two teams look as though they’ve established two of the most threatening attacking line-ups in the league and goals look very likely. They’ve scored 13 between them so far, and both defences look far from unbreakable. It’s also worth considering that both sides have scored in the last five meetings between them at the Etihad, and it may well be worth backing both teams to score at 1/2.
Match odds – Draw 14/5
Neither side will want to lose ground on leaders Manchester United, and both managers certainly won’t want to lose this one. It’s early days but both sides look equally as strong, especially going forward, and we could well see a lot of attacking football when the two sides meet on Saturday. I fancy a draw between two in-form sides, priced at 14/5, however you can back odds of 4/5 for a City win, or 3/1 for Liverpool to make it five wins from their last six Premier League meetings – very good odds considering recent results.
Writer’s Prediction: Manchester City 2 – 2 Liverpool
*Odds correct at the time of publication, click here for all the latest odds on upcoming football matches.