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Can Baroka FC cause a shock in the TKO Final?

13 December 2018, by: Thabang Kgeledi


Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool are on a five-game winning streak in the league. Yes, the Reds are a team on form but fatigue, injuries to key players and pressure from Manchester City will -sooner or later- derail their plans of winning the Premier League title. Their first train wreck will be a loss or draw against Manchester United.

Liverpool’s defence has improved significantly since last season but their attack (statistically) hasn’t. On Sunday Liverpool will host their arch enemies Manchester United. On paper, this should be an easy win for Liverpool but, soccer is played on the field and I foresee a draw or a loss for Jurgen Klopp’s men, here’s why:

Liverpool came up against Napoli in the Champions League on Tuesday night. They needed three points to secure their place in the last 16 whilst Napoli only needed a draw. The Reds dominated the game, scored the first goal, but didn’t kill the match off. Keeper Allison Becker had to make a heroic last-minute stop to save Liverpool’s blushes and see them qualify to the next round. This was an intense game that must have taken a lot out of the players psychically and emotionally.

In other bad news, defender Joel Matip suffered an injury. The Cameroon international is to undergo an operation and must now sit out some pivotal fixtures in the coming weeks.

With Joe Gomez also out for the same period, it leaves Jurgen Klopp with only Virgil van Dijk and Dejan Lovren as senior centre-backs over the busy Christmas schedule.

Manchester United, on the other hand, played a slightly weakened side against Valencia in their Champions League fixture during the week. They lost but didn’t need a result as they had already qualified for the round of 16.

Liverpool leapfrogged Manchester City for first position on the Premier League when they smashed Bournemouth 0-4 and Chelsea beat Manchester City 2-0 last weekend.

Liverpool are now in pole position but, City will continue winning their games easily whilst Liverpool sometimes struggle to win theirs. Liverpool need to win every game because it’s likely City will win 85% of their remaining fixtures.

Keeping up with the Joneses or the Guardiola’s is going to be a mammoth task. Liverpool will have to press and take the game to Manchester United which could leave them exposed at the back. Manchester United aren’t a good team but they do have good attacking players, Marcus Rashford, Anthony Martial, and Romelu Lukaku are more than able to punish unprotected defences.

Jose Mourinho has played Liverpool four times as Manchester United manager, drawing three times and winning once. Four games isn’t much of a sample size but Liverpool have had the same core of players for a couple years and it seems Mourinho has the formula on how not to get beaten by them.

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