Manchester City vs. Liverpool: How the Reds Will Line Up in Premier League Game

Matt Ladson@mattladsonFeatured ColumnistAugust 24, 2014

Manchester City vs. Liverpool: How the Reds Will Line Up in Premier League Game

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    Last season's top two in the Premier League meet in their second match of the new season as Manchester City host Liverpool at The Etihad Stadium on Monday night.

    Brendan Rodgers' young side finished two points behind Manuel Pellegrini's team in 2013/14 and will be looking for a positive result to show that last season wasn't a one-off.

    The corresponding fixture last season saw Raheem Sterling wrongly have a goal disallowed, with City taking three points in a 2-1 win.

    Vincent Kompany and Alvaro Negredo scored for the home side, with Philippe Coutinho having given Liverpool the lead.

    Rodgers must decide whether to give some of his new signings their full debuts in such a high-profile game. Will Alberto Moreno come straight in at left-back? Will Emre Can be added to the midfield?

    We take a look at how the Reds will line up on Monday.

GK: Simon Mignolet

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    Belgian stopper Simon Mignolet suffered one of his high-profile blunders in this match last season, tamely allowing Negredo to put City ahead just before half-time.

    He'll be looking to avenge that mistake and continue the season on a positive note after a couple of important saves in the win over Southampton last week.

RB: Javier Manquillo

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    Twenty-year-old Spanish right-back Javier Manquillo had a solid debut in English football last week against Southampton.

    With Jon Flanagan still sidelined through injury, Manquillo will likely continue here—a huge test for him so early in his career.

CB: Martin Skrtel

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    Martin Skrtel's place in the side is pretty assured, especially with Rodgers looking to get a consistent system at the back and stop the leaks from last season.

CB: Dejan Lovren

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    Dejan Lovren is Liverpool's new leader at the back and Rodgers will be hoping that the partnership of Lovren and Skrtel passes its first big test against City's expansive front line.

LB: Glen Johnson

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    This is where Rodgers has one of his big decisions, whether to give Moreno his debut, or keep Glen Johnson on the left.

    Rodgers may opt to keep with the same back four as against Southampton and the friendly with Dortmund, choosing experienced Johnson over new signing Moreno.

CM: Steven Gerrard

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    Of course, Steven Gerrard's role is assured as the deep-lying playmaker.

    He was played alongside Lucas Leiva last week against Southampton but Rodgers is likely to change that for this fixture.

CM: Joe Allen

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    When Lucas was replaced in the second-half last week, it was Joe Allen who impressed and thus he is pushing for a start in midfield alongside Gerrard and Jordan Henderson.

    Rodgers will need to decide whether to go with Allen or new signing Emre Can. Can could offer more physical play but Allen is assured on the ball and has more Premier League experience.

CM: Jordan Henderson

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    Jordan Henderson is one of the key men at Anfield. His dismissal late on in this fixture at Anfield last April proved decisive in the title run-in as he missed three important fixtures, with Liverpool winning only one in his absence.

    The energy, pressing and drive that Henderson provides is vital for Gerrard to prosper and the England man is also developing into a leader of the side.

AM: Philippe Coutinho

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    The attacking trio will feature the Brazilian Philippe Coutinho, who is looking to enjoy another impressive performance against City. He scored in both fixtures against Pellegrini's side last season.

    Somewhat subdued against Southampton, Coutinho's form will be key for Liverpool.

AM: Raheem Sterling

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    Joining Coutinho in attack will, of course, be Raheem Sterling, the 19-year-old who has had a stunning 2014 so far.

    Rodgers could opt to play the England attacker in a more advanced role alongside Daniel Sturridge.

FWD: Daniel Sturridge

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    With a quite incredible 36 goals in 50 games for Liverpool, Daniel Sturridge's place in the side is assured—especially with Mario Balotelli's move not completed in time for him to be in the squad.

    Sturridge scored in this fixture two seasons ago and will be looking to add to his tally. Last season he scored in each of the the Reds' opening three fixtures and this year he began with the winning goal against Southampton.