After winning the cup that no one really cares about
It's now back to the Premier League and a cracker at Anfield
All the talk in the lead up to Sunday was about whether Manuel Pellegrini would pick Joe Hart or Willy Caballero. Everyone forgetting that even though Willy ended up in goal, Liverpool had a useless cock between the sticks at the other end.
Fernandinho took advantage of that, before Coutinho leveled it. He would subsequently shank his penalty in the shootout, where Caballero was the hero as City took the Capital One Cup.
Now, the focus is back on the title for City, and back onto trying to stay ahead of Chelsea for the Kopites. They meet at Anfield on Wednesday.
Jurgen Klopp was pleased with the way his side performed at Wembley before getting England-itis in the shootout. And he’ll also be happy with Liverpool’s home record against Manchester City. City haven’t beaten the Pool in Anfield since the 2002/2003 Premiership.
The Liverpool team that day contained some quality players like Gerrard, Riise and Emile Heskey. It had Michael Owen leading the line. That means he was the main striker. And it was his job to score.
City’s team boasts Sergio Aguero and Yaya Toure nowadays, far cry from Joey Barton and Nicolas Anelka (who grabbed both goals in 2003). They’re currently sitting fourth, nine points off of Leicester with a game in hand. They have the squad quality to string together three or four wins on the spin, but it’s hard to tell where Pellegrini’s preferences lie, with a Champions League quarter final place surely distracting him.
Can the same thing happen twice in four days? Fernandinho is 9/1 to open the scoring, Coutinho is 15/8 anytime, and the 1-1 draw is 11/2. Liverpool have been suffocating teams at Anfield recently, but have been failing to close out games. Of their 14 home games so far this year, they’ve been drawing at half time in nine of those. City need a win desperately, but could struggle to break down Klopp’s defence.
My tip is for it to be a draw at halftime and Man City to lead at full time at 5/1. I can’t see City losing three Premier League games on the spin, and with Sunday fresh in their minds, will take the three points after a bit of a dogfight.