BBC Sport pundit and former Liverpool footballer Mark Lawrenson has delivered his verdict ahead of the Reds’ meeting with Manchester United at Anfield – and has predicted a familiar story for most of the league leaders’ opponents this season.
United are the only side not to have been beaten by Liverpool this year, with the Reds picking up their solitary draw of the league campaign at Old Trafford in October, but Lawrenson feels his former team’s relentless march towards the league title will leave them ‘desperate’ to continue their run against their rivals.
Making his predictions for the weekend’s action for BBC Sport, Lawrenson backed Liverpool to continue their winning streak and have no trouble in picking themselves up for a big game despite their comfortable position at the top of the table.
He said: “I am more confident about a Liverpool win this time than I would usually be before this game – for obvious reasons. Jurgen Klopp’s side are just playing extremely well and they are really in the groove at the moment, especially at home.
“You also just sense with them that they are absolutely relentless and they will be desperate to beat United. The Liverpool players know that, along with Everton, this is the big game of the season in every single way.”
Lawrenson will likely receive no prizes for backing another Liverpool victory – with the Reds already up to 20 after just 21 matches in the Premier League. However, the former defender points towards the attitude which could well be a cornerstone of Liverpool’s success, and with Jurgen Klopp’s side showing few signs of slowing down in the race for the title, it would not be a huge surprise to find that mental strength is playing a key role in their current run.
Meanwhile, that United could be without Marcus Rashford – their scorer in the teams’ most recent meeting – does not suggest the visitors will even be at full strength to face the runaway leaders, and indicates that bar a rather large upset, Lawrenson will probably have called this right.
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