Liverpool will be keen to show that their ambitions of breaking back into the Premier League’s top four are realistic, and face the current division toppers in the form of Manchester City on Sunday. With an impressive performance last weekend leading to a 2-1 away win over Chelsea at Stamford Bridge, The Reds have a chance to really lay a claim down for Champions League qualification against Roberto Mancini’s side.
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Kenny Dalglish’s men are unbeaten in nine games in all competitions, and although this may have included disappointing draws against newly promoted Norwich and Swansea, momentum is building on Merseyisde. With three points separating five teams from third to seventh place, this campaign is set to be a battle to see who represents England in Europe’s top club competition next year.
The Reds showed resolve, determination and quality to overcome Chelsea last weekend, and despite Andre Villas Boas’ men going through something of a slump, Stamford Bridge is not an easy place to go and leave with three points. The return of Jamie Carragher to the Liverpool first-team seemed to add a bit of leadership that may have been missing in recent weeks, and the club should be buoyed on by a hard fought and rewarding three points.
City were brought back to earth with a bump in midweek, as Edinson Cavani and Napoli showed that the big-spending side can be defeated. A 2-1 defeat to the Serie A side threatens to take the wind out of the current league leaders’ sails, and Mancini’s men may well be distracted by their impending elimination from the Champions League.
That said, the Anfield roar and passion of a rejuvenated home team will give Liverpool hope. It is a shame that Steven Gerrard is still sidelined through injury, but the hosts should not use this as an excuse, as on their day Dalglish’s men have the ability to beat anyone in the division, even without their talisman.
With Tottenham and Arsenal in excellent form, Liverpool must continue to pick up points if they are to challenge for the top four finish the fans crave. Despite the tighter nature of things at the top of the Premier League this season, Liverpool fans have every right to consider their team as a potential 2012-13 Champions League competitor, as King Kenny’s influence continues to push the sleeping giants in the right direction.
Liverpool v Man City: Sunday, 27th November, 3:30pm on Sky Sports 1, Sky Sports HD 1 and Sky 3D.
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