Manchester United vs. Liverpool: Predicting United's Starting XI vs Liverpool

Devil in a New DressSenior Writer ISeptember 20, 2012

Manchester United vs. Liverpool: Predicting United's Starting XI vs Liverpool

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    Manchester United travel to Liverpool for their fifth game of the Premier League season fresh from a win in their Champions League opener.

    Four games into the season and a new regime under Brendan Rogers, Liverpool have amassed just two points from their four league games, losing two games including a 2-0 defeat at home to Arsenal. Manchester United, on the other hand, have won three of their four games, scoring at least thrice in all three.

    Sir Alex brought off Robin Van Persie, Shinji Kagawa and Paul Scholes early against Galatasaray with this game in mind. Here are my predictions for United's starting lineup against Liverpool.


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    GK: Anders Lindegaard

    I can't really tell heads from tail on this one, so will go with what my head tells me, which is Anders Lindegaard. 


    LB: Patrice Evra

    Sir Alex Ferguson handed Alexander Buttner his debut in place of Patrice Evra against Wigan Athletic but brought the Frenchman back into the fold against Galatasaray.

    While he was less than convincing, I fear Sir Alex's "loyalty" may win here.


    RB: Rafael da Silva

    Rafael da Silva was handed the No. 2 jersey at the start of this season and his performances so far have been worthy of that shirt.

    His forward runs have been a staple of United's good play, he's gotten a goal for himself and won a penalty for United against Galatasaray.


    CB: Nemanja Vidic

    Why not? He's United's best defender and captain.


    CB: Rio Ferdinand

    Rio Ferdinand played at center-back position against Wigan in United's last EPL outing but was left on the bench against Galatasaray, with Jonny Evans taking his place.

    I feel he was rested for Anfield and should therefore start.


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    CM: Paul Scholes

    I was surprised by Paul Scholes appearance in the Champions League but given that Sir Alex was going for experience, it was no surprise.

    Experience will be key again in this match and who else but Paul Scholes for the occasion?


    CM: Michael Carrick

    So often over the past two or three years, Michael Carrick has been Sir Alex Ferguson go-to holding midfielder in the big games and often times it has been to mixed results.

    That said, Sir Alex will no doubt stick with his man against Liverpool as well.


    LM: Danny Welbeck

    Danny Welbeck has been picked ahead of Luis Nani at left midfield a few times this season already and this is likely to happen again.

    Nani had pretty average games against Everton and Wigan Athletic. And in the Champions League, he was unconvincing. Danny Welbeck to take his place.


    RM: Antonio Valencia

    Antonio Valencia was rested for the visit of Wigan to Old Trafford but returned to first team action against Galatasaray and should start against Liverpool.


    AM/C: Shinji Kagawa

    Despite rumors of a back injury sidelining Kagawa, the midfielder quashed those fears by starting and providing an assist for Michael Carrick's goal against Galatasaray (The Guardian).

    The Japanese midfielder was brought off early in the Champions League to save him for the Anfield trip. I believe he will make a start against Liverpool.


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    SC: Robin van Persie

    Robin van Persie is United's best striking option at the moment and should start against Liverpool.

    The striker didn't have the best of games against Galatasaray but that performance was a one-off for the team in my opinion.