Manchester City vs Liverpool | Sunday 8th November 2020, 16:30 | Sky Sports
The two best teams of the past few years once again go toe-to-toe at The Etihad in what could, even in the infancy of the season, prove a pivotal game.
Liverpool can go back to the summit with a point or more here and quotes of 5/2 or bigger are sure to tempt a few in given the lack of home advantage for City, and the respective Premier League campaigns of the two.
If you look at the form of Pep Guardiola’s men then it is very impressive, plenty of clean sheets and plenty of wins. That being said they’re sitting in 12th with just three victories from their opening six games. Sure, they have a couple of games in hand but you’d still expect a better return given their fixtures.
The positive for Pep is Gabriel Jesus is back in the squad after injury and bolsters their attacking arsenal, they have been opting for Ferran Torres as more of a central striker and coped pretty well. To be fair, you have to give credit to their defensive efforts which have helped them to get the points they desired.
City have conceded just three goals in their past eight in all competitions which deserves more respect than they have got in my eyes. I therefore can see why they’re favourites here but quotes of around even-money aren’t giving much away.
Can Liverpool be backed though? I can see more of a case for them at the prices, but in these big games without three key players in Virgil Van Dijk, Fabinho and Thiago they could be vulnerable. All those players would provide a real reassurance and if they were fit and the Reds were this price I’d be lapping it up.
Instead I’m going to head to the Bet Builder market and go slightly against the grain. Often in these big fixtures, goal and card lines are artificially high and I do think that could be the case again here. With that in mind, I’m happy to combine each team to have Under 4 Cards and the match to have Under 5 Goals, which is a 10/11 shot at Bet365.
Liverpool tended to look to keep things tight away and playing on pretty fine margins, and given the magnitude of this fixture, I don’t think they’ll go crazy. It could be a bit of a chess match this with little between the pair and I do think Liverpool would be happy with a draw, whilst Pep has openly spoke about how Liverpool’s attacking trio have caused him headaches, so a risk averse set-up could be in order.
Both sides aren’t rife for picking up cards either, Man City have totalled nine cards in their six games whilst Liverpool have picked up just four in their seven league games. Craig Pawson has the whistle here and he’s not mad with the book. He’s averaged 3.65 cards per-game this season which is about average – his lifetime figures show he averages 3.47 card – so given we have this ref and these two relatively low card teams I’m happy to get on both to have fewer than four here.
Manchester City vs Liverpool – Manchester City Under 4 Cards, Liverpool Under 4 Cards and Under Goals (10/11 Bet365)