It's about time for some more English Premier League football as Manchester United take on Liverpool this coming Sunday. Manchester United currently sit at No. 2 in the standings and Liverpool at No. 17. Most people probably didn't expect to see such a contrast in standings going into one of English football's biggest rivalries.
Manchester United lost their season opener to Everton, but that must have been a gesture of kindness to the other Premier League teams. They have gone on to win the rest of their matches since, including a dominant 4-0 victory over Wigan Athletic.
This game is a tale of two different fates as Liverpool couldn't be doing much worse. To date they have zero wins, two draws and two losses. Through four games, they have scored just three goals and given up eight. Their play is clearly poorer than one would expect from a team that is consistently at the top of the standings.
Where: Anfield Football Stadium, Liverpool, England
When: Sunday, September 23, 8:30 a.m. ET
Live Stream: skysports.com
TV Information: Sky Sports, 8:30 a.m.-10:15 a.m. ET
Manchester United Look to Continue Their Stretch of Dominance
Even though Manchester United have yet to play anybody with a championship-caliber team, they have still taken care of business.
A quick look at their stats will tell you that scoring goals is the strength of the team. An even deeper look should let you know that Robin Van Persie is largely responsible for that strength.
He has four goals on the season meaning that he is averaging a goal per game. Van Persie's addition has proven to be a success and one that is helping them win games.
It's also worth mentioning that his four goals are more than Liverpool's whole team has scored all year.
Manchester United do have their share of problems, and one of them is at goalkeeper.
It's fair to expect De Gea to start against Liverpool and a clean sheet out of him would be ideal for Manchester United.
In the end, a balanced offense and defense will put the team in the best possible position to beat Liverpool.
Will the Rivalry Keep Liverpool in the Game?
It's no secret to any sports fan, rivalries are completely different games.
It doesn't matter if it's one of the higher ranked teams vs. a lower ranked team. All records and achievements are thrown away when a rivalry game is played.
Wouldn't you know that Manchester United vs. Liverpool is exactly like the scenario above.
"The enmity between the two cities/sides dates back to the construction of the Manchester Ship Canal in 1894, which usurped Liverpool's import/export business, the port city's industrial livelihood. Surely, football rivalries have started over much smaller incidents.
Yes, the history and tradition underpinning these league matches are unparalleled, but the only real "trophy" on the line of late has been bragging rights (granted, never too underestimated in the realm of sports).
Things are all square over the last five meetings (2-1-2), but the Red Devils own a decided advantage in the 117-year old tilt (72-51-62)."
117 years is about as long a rivalry as you will see and it only adds to the drama of the match.
Everybody from the crowd to the players feels the energy and that could be what keeps Liverpool in contention for getting some kind of points.
Apart from a solid draw with Manchester City, Liverpool hasn't given anybody any reason to be excited about them.
In fact, they've give people a reason to be nervous.
Still though, as mentioned earlier, rivalries are totally different beasts. A strong performance could be the beginning of Liverpool's road back to success.
Manchester United Wins this One: 2-0
Who wins the match?
Manchester United might have some goalkeeper issues, but Liverpool have even greater goal scoring problems.
Liverpool are going to find themselves playing defense for the majority of the game as Manchester United's offense is going to be too strong to stop.
It's definitely another rivalry game, but some rivalry games are just better than others. This one will be entertaining, but the end result shouldn't be too close.