Manchester City and Liverpool meet at Etihad Stadium in the headline clash of this weekend’s EPL action.
The title rivals head into Sunday’s contest sitting five points and nine places apart in the table, with defending champions Liverpool riding a six-game undefeated streak and back on top following successive wins over Sheffield United and West Ham.
City, meanwhile, languish in mid-table after a frustrating opening to the 2020/21 season by their high standards, though Pep’s side are on a run of three consecutive victories across all competitions and unbeaten in their last eight.
Neither side was troubled in the Champions League in midweek, with Atalanta and Olympiacos both put to the sword with no fuss in the warm-up for this enticing main event.
Neither of these giants started the season well, though have both largely recovered now, albeit with Liverpool in a far more commanding position at the summit.
The Reds’ away form isn’t great over the last 10 games or so, while their record at the Etihad has been positively miserable of late.
A draw seems a likely outcome here, hopefully featuring no shortage of goals and entertainment.
City shackling Jota – who has six goals in four matches after his treble in Bergamo – is likely to be crucial to their chances of achieving a positive result.
Manchester City forward Gabriel Jesus could make just a second Premier League start of the season following a goalscoring return from injury in the midweek win Sergio Aguero, Benjamin Mendy and Fernandinho remain out.
Naby Keita is available after returning in Tuesday’s Champions League win but Thiago Alcantara is still sidelined.
- Manchester City have won their last three home league games against Liverpool by an aggregate score of 11-1.
- They can win consecutive top-flight matches against Liverpool for the first time since a run of four victories between 1935 and 1937.
- The Reds have failed to keep a clean sheet in the last 10 league away encounters, conceding 26 goals in total.
- However, Liverpool are unbeaten in 11 league meetings as the reigning champions since a 3-1 defeat in 1977.
- Manchester City are aiming to win back-to-back league games for the first time this season.
- They have won nine of their past 10 Premier League matches against the reigning champions.
- Eleven points is their lowest tally after six league matches since registering the same total in 2014-15 under Manuel Pellegrini.
- In Pep Guardiola’s 11 previous top-flight seasons as a manager, his teams have always had at least 16 points after seven matches.
- City could go five Premier League matches without scoring more than one goal for the first time in 11 years.
- They are one short of 100 Premier League home defeats.
- Guardiola’s eight defeats versus Jurgen Klopp is his worst record against any manager.
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- Liverpool have lost four Premier League fixtures in 2020, the same amount as the previous two years combined.
- They have won only three of their last nine Premier League away matches (D2, L4), following a run of 16 victories in 17 games.
- Liverpool have conceded 15 goals after seven Premier League games, their most at this stage of a league campaign since 1964-65.
- The Reds have conceded 27 Premier League goals since winning the title in June, the joint-most of any top-flight team during that period.
- Liverpool have won a league-high 28 points from losing positions since the start of last season.
- Mohamed Salah has scored 80 Premier League goals in 115 games since his Liverpool debut in 2017, nine more than any other top-flight player during that period.