Jamie Carragher expects defending champions to be held by struggling this weekend, while Gary Neville says it will be ‘fascinating’ to see how copes with .
Man City travel to Anfield on Sunday for a mouth-watering clash between the two stand-out teams in the Premier League in recent years.
Liverpool finished just one point behind Pep Guardiola’s side last season but already find themselves 13 points adrift of Man City this term.
The Reds have won just two of their opening eight league games to slip to 11th, four points above the relegation zone.
Manchester City, meanwhile, are the only unbeaten team yet in the English top-flight, although they remain one point behind early Premier League leaders Arsenal.
‘I don’t expect Liverpool to take a backward step – it’s not their style,’ Carragher told when asked for his prediction.
‘They’re at Anfield so I expect to use the crowd and be really aggressive and make it as difficult as they can for Manchester City. I think it will be a tough game for both.
‘Manchester City don’t have a great record at Anfield but Liverpool are up against the best team in the world. I think it will be a great game and a draw again – 1-1 or 2-2 like last season.’
Carragher also believes Liverpool should focus on stopping Kevin De Bruyne rather than Haaland, who has scored 20 goals in 12 games since joining Man City last summer.
The former England defender added: ‘Two Manchester City players jump out as players to watch for Liverpool – Erling Haaland and Kevin De Bruyne, but they’re almost like a package together!
‘I’d almost be more focused on De Bruyne rather than Haaland in this game. If you stop De Bruyne, you take 50 per cent away from Haaland as well as the connection the two have got is there already. And for me, De Bruyne is the best midfielder in the world.
‘Yes, Haaland has been an absolute sensation in the Premier League but he needs servicing and you can’t get anyone better than De Bruyne.
‘When you’ve got the best passer of the ball that the Premier League has ever seen, it certainly helps when you have Haaland up front.
‘If Haaland was playing for Liverpool right now, there’s no way he would have scored the amount of goals he has now as he wouldn’t have had that quality behind him, plus the way Liverpool are playing right now.’
Neville, meanwhile, insists he ‘cannot wait’ for the battle between Haaland and out-of-sorts Liverpool defender Van Dijk.
The Manchester United legend said: ‘I still think, no matter what form Liverpool are in and where they are, Sunday will still feel like the toughest game they [City] are going to face.
‘Look, at the end of the day you know what I feel about those two clubs, but on Sunday you can’t help but think of Haaland against Van Dijk.
‘You just can’t stop thinking about how that’s going to play out. The best centre-back in the world for the last three or four years, who has struggled a little bit more this season.
‘But he’s against this absolute phenomenon. That Liverpool back line, which pushes up with space in behind… I’m fascinated by that, I can’t wait for it, to be honest.’
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