This match is being billed as a potential decider in the race for second spot on the Premier League log: United currently occupy the runners-up spot on 62 points but they have the Reds breathing down their necks on 60 points.
Tottenham Hotspur (58 points) also come into the equation, but there’s no doubt that if one of these two North-West rivals can pick up all three points it puts them well in charge of the race to be ‘best of the rest’ behind champions elect Manchester City.
The Red Devils come into the game on the back of a 3-2 away win over Crystal Palace on Monday, though the match brought no resolution to any of their recent problems: the defence looks shaky when attacked directly, Paul Pogba remains well short of his best and Alexis Sanchez is still struggling to it into their style of play.
Liverpool look much more confident and assured, with their goalless draw against Porto in the Champions League in midweek (the Reds still progressed 5-0 on aggregate) bringing to an end a run of four straight victories across all competitions.
Yet Jurgen Klopp’s side will know that they must produce something special to beat United at Old Trafford – a feat only Manchester City have managed this season.
In head-to-head stats, United and Liverpool have met in 171 matches across all competitions. The Red Devils have claimed 67 wins compared to 56 for their arch rivals, while 48 games have been drawn.
The teams’ most recent meeting was a Premier League clash at Anfield in October 2017 which ended in a goalless stalemate. It was a fourth successive draw between the teams, while United haven’t won in this rivalry since January 2016.
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* stats and bets correct at time of publishing
Recent league form, latest results first
Head-to-head, all competitions
Matches played 171
Man United wins 67
Liverpool wins 56
Man United goals 229
Liverpool goals 209