Liverpool are the only team who can stop Manchester City winning the Premier League title this season because Manchester United have “almost bottled it”, says Jamie Carragher.
Jurgen Klopp’s side are seven points behind City ahead of their league match at Anfield this afternoon following their 1-0 home defeat by Brighton on Wednesday.
Victory for Liverpool would move them up to third with 43 points from 23 matches, two points behind United, who were held to a 3-3 draw by Everton on Saturday evening, while Leicester City could move level with United should they beat Wolverhampton Wanderers.
However, if Pep Guardiola’s team are victorious against the defending champions then they would move onto 50 points – five ahead of United and 10 better off than Liverpool, with the added bonus of a game in hand.
Whatever happens, the 4.30pm kick-off is a crucial game in the Premier League title race.
Former Liverpool defender Carragher believes that Klopp’s side are the only team who have what it takes to prevent City from running away with it.
“I think it’s only Liverpool that can stop them because I don’t think Man United even fancy it,” he said on Sky Sports.
“I agree with what Graeme said in the studio just then, I think listening to the comments of the United manager yesterday, me and Roy had this conversation on the back of the Arsenal game last week, Man United feel like they’re happy to be involved. I cannot believe it, I honestly can’t believe it, this is a unique season, we know it’s different.
“Liverpool have got no centre-backs, City have got no strikers, De Bruyne’s out today, we’re saying how great of a season City have had, but last season we were saying they were off the boil, they were nowhere near their best, they’re only three points better off this season.
“So, it still shows they’re not the City of two or three years ago that we’ve seen and it is a strange season.
“I think Man United in the last few weeks have almost bottled it, they’ve got there and have been so excited they’re there and have almost talked themselves out of it with the last few results they’ve had. I don’t think there’s much belief there.
“I don’t think there’s massive belief in Liverpool, really, in terms of the supporters, in terms of winning the league because of the problems that they’ve had.”
United followed their 9-0 thrashing of Southampton with a disappointing draw against Everton on Saturday, as Dominic Calvert-Lewin denied them a win which would have put pressure back on City ahead of today’s crunch match.
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Manchester United smashed nine goals past Southampton on Tuesday night as they bounced back from disappointing results against Sheffield United and Arsenal in emphatic fashion.
The game was effectively over as a contest inside the first two minutes as Southampton were reduced to 10 men, but United still had to find the goals and they did exactly that, with Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Marcus Rashford, Edinson Cavani, Anthony Martial (two), Scott McTominay, Bruno Fernandes and Daniel James all getting on the scoresheet.
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Edinson Cavani’s header and Bruno Fernandes’ brilliant strike from the edge of the box had them 2-0 up at half-time before Everton fought back.
Abdoulaye Doucoure and James Rodriguez brought the visitors back level before Scott McTominay’s header made it 3-2 to Ole Gunnar Solkjaer’s side.
They appeared set to go level on points with City before Calvert-Lewin netted following a flick-on from a 94th-minute free-kick to deny the hosts a vital three points.