Manchester United Vs Liverpool: Players To Watch Out For

Saura BhattacharjeeAnalyst ISeptember 17, 2010

Liverpool manager Roy Hodgson and United Manager Sir Alex Ferguson
Liverpool manager Roy Hodgson and United Manager Sir Alex Ferguson

On Sunday, when Roy Hodgson's men visit Old Trafford for their face off with Sir Alex Ferguson's Red Devils', it will be the most awaited game of the weekend and all EPL watchers will surely be glued in front of their television sets.

Liverpool have had a very good European outing as they destroyed Steau Bucharest 4-1 at home last night. The win will have given a big boost to the team's confidence as the Reds prepare to rise from their early season jitters when they face Rooney & Co., who too are struggling and will be looking to overcome their unimpressive Champions League performance as well as last week's disappointing draw at Everton.

It will undoubtedly be a hotly contested match as players of both clubs have much to fight for. Here we will look into those players on whose performances eyes will be most focused on when the Anfield Reds face the Red Devils of Old Trafford.

Wayne Rooney:

Manchester United forward Wayne Rooney, whose personal life has been thrown into turmoil after news of cheating on his wife were leaked, will be looking to prove that the scandal has not affected his performance when he takes the field on Sunday.

After being rested for last weekend's drawn match against Everton, and after a not-so-impressive performance against Scottish side Rangers, the Englishman will have eyes watching how he fares against the Merseysiders. The onus is on Rooney to prove his critics wrong and keep his supporters' faith.

Fernando Torres:

After a lackluster performance in these year's FIFA World Cup at South Africa, people had thought that Torres was recovering from his injury. But an unimpressive start in the new season has started wild rumours; he might have his mind set somewhere else and he might be regretting his decision to stay back at Anfield.

Though Liverpool management have denied any such rumours, when the Spaniard and his team visit Old Trafford this weekend, Torres' performance will be under intense scrutiny.

The Liverpool talisman needs to deliver if he is to quash such rumours and prove his doubters wrong.


The player who was seen as the replacement for Cristiano Ronaldo has been impressive in the past season as this season. Now with the injury to Manchester United's dependable winger, Valencia, which will see the Ecuadorian sidelined at least until February, it will be upon Nani to shoulder United's wide responsibilities.

The Portuguese youngster has been very effective in United's midfield, formulating numerous goalscoring chances for his teammates and taking shots at goals himself, too.

It will be left to see whether he can handle Valencia's responsibility ably and deliver another superb performance to guide his team to sweet revenge over the beleaguered Reds.

Joe Cole:

The former Chelsea man made a blistering return against Bulgarian side Steau Bucharest at Anfield yesterday in Liverpool's Europa League encounter.

The extremely talented Englishman scored his way into record books as he scored the quickest European goal in Liverpool's history with only 25 seconds of play gone from the start. The distraught Chelsea man, who lost favour in Ancelotti's squad last season, joined Liverpool on a free transfer after failing to agree on his wages at Stamford Bridge.

His new season at a new club did not start smoothly as he was red carded on the opening day of the season. The last time Joe Cole was in Old Trafford, he scored the winner for Chelsea and this weekend too he will be looking to repeat that feat, as Roy Hodgson's men try to give their poorly started season a face lift.

Nemanja Vidic:

The United defender has nightmares on hearing of Liverpool—in three of United's last four encounters against Liverpool, the Serb has been red carded and his team defeated.

Only the last one, earlier this year, was an exception when United won and Vidic played a full 90 minutes. This time too, the two clubs meet expecting to turnaround their poor early seasons.

Vidic has been impressive so far for the Red Devils and it will only be to see whether he can overcome his red card jinx against the Reds and deliver another superb performance.