Here are the highlights of Solskjaer’s pre-match interview with Sky:
He got a couple of knocks again and jolts when he came on against Wolverhampton. He’s aggravated his back, he’s had some trouble before, and of course we’re going to give him time to recover and rest before we put him back on the pitch. He’s always recovered quickly before, so let’s hope he does that again. I wouldn’t expect him to be back in the next few weeks. I think we’ve got a way that … we have to come to a difficult place, to play against a very good team, and we have to try to maximise the players we’ve got. I think we’ve got a chance to give them some trouble with the way we’re playing.
Burnley have indeed beaten Leicester by two goals to one goal. John Brewin has the aftermath:
Meanwhile, some news breaks about Marcus Rashford, who according to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will be out “for weeks” with his back injury.
It’s looking like another bad weekend for the Liverpool-chasers: Manchester City having drawn yesterday, Leicester are currently 2-1 down at Burnley, with nine minutes (plus stoppages) remaining.
So Liverpool play their familiar first-choice XI. United, meanwhile, play both Brandon Williams and Luke Shaw, presumably as some kind of Alexander-Arnold neutralising double-left-back combo.
Team news is in, and without further ado, or really any ado at all, here it is!
Liverpool: Alisson, Alexander-Arnold, Gomez, Van Dijk, Robertson, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Henderson, Wijnaldum, Salah, Firmino, Mane. Subs: Fabinho, Adrian, Minamino, Lallana, Origi, Matip, Jones.
Man Utd: De Gea, Wan Bissaka, Lindelof, Maguire, Williams, Fred, Matic, James, Andreas Pereira, Shaw, Martial. Subs: Bailly, Jones, Mata, Lingard, Dalot, Romero, Greenwood.
Referee: Craig Pawson.
As you survey Liverpool’s path to the title in search of potential banana skins, there’s really not much to see between now and the trip to Manchester City in early April. After Wolves away next week (potential danger there as well, although Wolves’ home record isn’t all that great) they have a run of league games against the teams currently (in league position order, rather than chronological) 13th, 16th, 16th again, 17th, 19th and 20th. Win all of their games between now and the end of that run and they will be at the very minimum 19 points ahead with 27 available, and in need of three wins from their last nine to seal the deal.
In other words, it’s die or do now for Liverpool. Today they play the only team to have taken points off them this season, in October’s 1-1 draw at Old Trafford. If Liverpool are to win the title by a gazillion points, one thing that might make the experience very fractionally less sweet is if they have failed to beat Manchester United along the way. Today’s the day to rectify that.
Here’s some pre-match reading: