Paul Ince: Liverpool’s form has put all the pressure on Man City

Former Reds captain Paul Ince believes Man City are feeling the heat ahead of the Liverpool game, and that it’s time to see what the champions are made of…

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Manchester City v Liverpool is the biggest game of the season so far. City are seven points behind, and if they let that slip to 10, it’ll be almost impossible to come back from.

If you’re Man City, and you see the way Liverpool dismantled Arsenal, you’d be terrified. They were frightening to watch.

In fact, watching Liverpool recently has reminded me of City last year – the way they’re playing and absolutely destroying every team in their path. Completely fearless and dominant, they have the presence which City had last season.

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Every Reds player is performing at the top of their game at the minute, they’re all there for one cause – and that is to win the league. We aren’t seeing that with City.

It reminds me of when I was at Manchester United, it’s not about any individual player. It’s a team thing, and the end result is to win the title.

That’s what we’re seeing now at Anfield, and it’ll be hard to stop them.

If Liverpool beat City, and don’t win the league, that’s a major embarrassment

If Liverpool win, 10 points is an enormous gap. I find it hard to see City coming back from that.

We’re only in January, and a lot of things can still happen, but it would be a major embarrassment if they fail to win the league after being ten points ahead.

The main thing Liverpool will have to contend with is the pressure it takes to win a title.

It’s been a long time, and once you get towards March, it’s merciless. You need to be strong to deal with it, and three points at the Etihad, widening that gap between them and City, would really help with that.

If I was a City fan, I’d be hugely apprehensive about the game. Liverpool won’t be intimidated about going to the Etihad, they’re the side in control. All of the pressure is on Man City.

There’s a little too much chopping and changing with City’s side, and for me that’s what’s caused them problems.

It’s a bit too mixed up, whereas with Liverpool you see consistency. Obviously, Kevin de Bruyne has been out, and as much as they aren’t a one-man team, his absence has been a major factor that will have caused them to drop points.

Pep is feeling the pressure

What we’re seeing at the minute is that the pressure and the nerves lies with Man City and Pep Guardiola. They have to win, and you can see that in the way they’re behaving.

Even Pep speaking out and saying how great Liverpool are, and that the game is must-win, shows to me that they’re feeling the heat.

When I look at Liverpool, everything is on their side this season.

Aside from the fact they’ve managed to avoid any major injuries to their star players, they’re going to teams that they struggled against last year and battering them.

If they can sustain that, and avoid the pressure, then it’s theirs for the taking. And like I said, if they go 10 points clear, there’s no excuses for not winning it.

Now’s the time for City to prove themselves.

Now’s the time to show your teeth as the champions, how are you going to react to Liverpool challenging you?

You’ve spent 80-100m on players, and they need to show their worth. It’s time to see what City are truly made of.

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