The Manchester City fans are feeling nervous in the Transfer Tavern ahead of their biggest match of the season so far against Liverpool at Anfield tonight.
Pep Guardiola takes his side to Merseyside this evening to face a side who ended their dream of enjoying an unbeaten campaign in the Premier League with a 4-3 victory in January. Jurgen Klopp’s side proved they are capable of beating anyone on their day in that particular match at the beginning of 2018, but they face a dramatically different fixture this evening in the first-leg of their Champions League quarter final clash tonight.
The European fixture will allow some of the most lethal attacking players on the continent to showcase their skills in the most prestigious competition in world football, which is why Man City’s goalkeeper Ederson (valued at £40.5 million by Transfermarkt) will be so pivotal to his side’s ambitions of taking a positive result back to The Etihad Stadium. Liverpool’s fluid front-three of Roberto Firmino, Mo Salah and Sadio Mane have stolen the headlines in recent weeks for their potent attacking displays in the Premier League, and despite City’s defensive quality, it’s likely they’ll enjoy some success in the final-third this evening.
Since arriving from Benfica last summer, Ederson has been near-flawless throughout the season in relation to every aspect of goalkeeping, especially with regards to his decision making. However, the Brazilian international made a crucial mistake against The Reds back in January when he stepped well off his line to clear the ball, but his weak punt only found its way to Mo Salah who punished him with devastating effect by lobbing the ball into the empty City goal from 40-yards.
It was Ederson’s first high-profile mistake of the season, and it was one which put City 4-1 down and ultimately decided the outcome of the match. Two-legged Champions League affairs are often decided on individual moments of brilliance and despair, so City’s stopper simply cannot afford to make a mistake of that nature once again this evening.
Equally, Ederson’s performance between the sticks will be vitally important to City’s success against Liverpool’s lethal attacking line-up. He has rapidly established himself as one of the best goalkeepers in world football on his debut season for the club, and if City are to get the better of their opponents this evening they will need him to justify his reputation by defying the likes of Salah and Firmino.