Liverpool vs. Manchester United COMBINED XIGriffochaz
Liverpool and Man United lock horns this Sunday in a top of the table clash that this rivarly has been built on for many years. You can see the preview and prediction for this massive game here but with the abundance of talent both sides have, who would make it in a combined xi between Liverpool and Man United. Let’s find out.
DAVID DE GEA
This was a difficult decision because you would say over the past few years Alisson Becker has been a better goalkeeper than David De Gea but let’s go into depth here. Alisson is perfect for Liverpool as he plays out from the back and has been fundamental to how the champions play but as a shot stopper, who would you rather have if you had to save a 1 on 1? David De Gea would be mine. He has mistakes in him but with a top quality defence in front of him, Dave would be able to clean up any defensive mishap while Alisson would give you a little concern. No doubting both are elite keepers and are cruical to their teams, but as a commanding figure, I am going David De Gea.
On paper this is an easy one but when you get down to it, the decision is actually quite hard. In terms of attacking, what Trent Alexander-Arnold has in high quantites, Aaron Wan Bissaka doesn’t and what AWB does defensively is something TAA lacks in. So, the comparison is more what’s better, TAA’s attacking ability or AWB’s defensive solidarity? I just feel AWB isn’t the finished article as of yet and has more flaws to his game than Trent who is a more complete right back. No arguing both are far from their best at the moment but on their day, I would rather have TAA than AWB.
One of the centre backs is evident but the other one was a tough one. Harry Maguire could have made it but his inconsistency is too much of a risk in a combined xi while Joe Gomez has his positional and marking flaws. That’s why a fully fit Eric Bailly makes the cut. His pace and strength matched with his aerial ability is a great combination to have in his game. Yes, injuries are considered in this team but the quality he possess is something you can’t turn a blind eye to.
VIRGIL VAN DIJK
Injured or not, Virgil Van Dijk is still one of the best centre backs currently playing the game and will go down in the history books as an all time great of defence. His impact on the Liverpool team upon his arrival in January 2018, is similar in size to the impact Bruno has had on United since January 2019. His presence alone is undeniable and the power he has at the back sets Liverpool up as a team. While Liverpool’s attack seems to be letting them down at the moment, Virgil Van Dijk’s injury has set back the single time Premier League champions.
Maybe the most underrated talent in this team, the Scotsman brings a different side to Liverpool’s game. Unlike Alexander-Arnold, Robertson’s attacking output is complimented by his ability to defend. He is a well rounded left back that is a trusted player to have in your team. Alex Telles’s defensive side to his game means he misses out and what Luke Shaw is becoming is a lesser version of Robertson. Potentially in a few years times, Luke Shaw could make it into this team but for now, Andrew has to get put in.
It’s quite hard to justify these picks over alternatives until we have named all three midfielders but the way I’m setting up is to have one defensive midfielder behind one box to box who would be alongside a more attacking option. While Scott Mctominay is an opinion divider, he doesn’t quite have what it takes to make this team. The real fight is between Fred and Fabinho. Now I do like Fred and I appreciate what he brings to Man United but when comparing to Liverpool’s fellow Brazilian, the United man looks shameful. Fabinho is my favourite Liverpool player because he just has it all. Defensively, Fabinho is a rock who can play in midfield or in defence, as seen this season. His tackling and positioning is elite and he is a similar player to the likes of Kante and Fernandinho and if you take him out of the team, you’d notice a significant downgrade on the side.
This will turn a few heads but here goes. This team is based on talent not form and the problem with Pogba has never been his talent but more his ability to perform to that talent on a consistent basis. On his day, which is turning out to be a Paul Pogba catchphrase, the Frenchman is a truly elite player and is one of the best on the planet. That quality in the midfield is crucial to have in a combined XI even if it means a shocking emission of Champions League winner Thiago who would push Pogba to the spot.
This inclusion is as clear as Van Dijk’s if not more. Even the most deluded and biased Liverpool fan would still want Bruno Fernandes at their club. His creativity and balls to the wall mentality is perfect for most teams and his leadership and passion is something that shouldn’t be rested on either. He turned a poor Man United side that failed to create chances let alone score goals into a free flowing attacking team that is currently sat atop the Premier League table. I would go as far as saying Bruno Fernandes walks into any team in the world, and that is a statement you can only credible make about a certain few players.
Another Liverpool player that will go down as a elite legend of the league, Mo Salah is a must in any combined XI. Even when he may not be firing, he has an impact on the game in one way or another. His pace is deadly and hard to deal with for defenders and his vision to pick a class pass or take a shot is stunning. Another name that could be considered as the best PL player at this present moment.
Now this may be cheating but the national hero had to make it. Playing up front, Marcus isa top quality goal getter who would get a G/A contribution even is his worst game. He beats Roberto Firmino, Edinson Cavani and Anthony Martial to the striker position despite being more of a winger at present. Martial is inconsistent and Cavani require a certain style of play but with Bruno behind him, Rashford would be a seriel goalscorer in this truly elite side.
Even as a United fan, I do admire and like Sadio Mane. He is just a happy go lucky guy you just can’t hate. However, you don’t get into this team off the back of being a nice guy but Sadio makes it because of his talent. Similar to both Salah and Rashford, Mane has quality to change the game at the drop of the hat and while he might not be as prolific as the other two by his side, his pace and skill is a lovely asset to have in this combined XI.
I love Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. I want to adopt Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and if thats an option then I will persue that however not even the most deluded United fan could honestly tell you Ole is a better coach that Klopp. Jurgen Klopp is the best manager in the world and has transformed Liverpool into a global force and not even the best P.E Teacher on the planet can dislodge him.
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