Liverpool and Manchester City are neck and neck in the Premier League title race, are at odds for a place in the FA Cup final and could meet in the Champions League final
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City and Liverpool are set to continue their rivalry at Wembley Stadium on Saturday FA Cup semi-finals, although the line-up at both sides is likely to change since Sunday’s vibrant 2-2 draw at the Etihad Stadium. But with the teams of Pep Guardiola and Jurgen Klopp serving football at such a sublime level and with both sides on opposite sides Champions League Ties remain with the tantalizing prospect of the two meeting in the final on May 28 in Paris.
While Liverpool’s place in the semi-finals is all but certain with a 3-1 lead over Benfica ahead of Wednesday’s second leg at Anfield, City’s route to the last four poses far more dangers. Guardiola’s side take a 1-0 lead against Spanish champions Atletico Madrid, knowing that they will need to do their best and show impressive mental determination if they are to advance into a likely semi-final showdown real Madrid.
Liverpool will likely have to navigate past German champions Bayern Munich in the other semi-final if the flagship game of European club football is to become the final between arguably the continent’s two best sides. City against Liverpool undoubtedly replaced El Clasico, in between Barcelona and Real Madrid as the most important game in European football.
No other site in the First League, possibly Europe, can match the stunning quality of the sides of Guardiola and Klopp, who always deliver on the entertainment front when they meet. Klopp described Sunday’s vibrant encounter as a boxing match between two heavyweights, with both sides trading blow for blow, though neither was ultimately able to land the knockout punch to secure victory.
With seven games left in the title race, there’s every chance both will win them all. It’s the impressive standard they’ve set which means City will lead Liverpool to the title by a single point, just like they did in 2018-19 when they had to finish the season with 14 straight wins to take on to get to the top.
City vs Liverpool may lack the animosity and poignancy of Manchester United and Arsenal’s rivalry, the mutual love between Guardiola and Klopp, a world away from the digs and disdain between archenemies Sir Alex Ferguson and Arsène Wengeras they battled for the title.
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But the quality of football between the two sides more than makes up for the lack of overt animosity between the two coaches and groups of players. City ended Sunday’s game feeling they had missed an opportunity to lift the Premier League trophy as they were the dominant side but were ultimately unable to break Liverpool’s impressive resistance.
City’s man-of-the-match Kevin De Bruyne said of the game: “We deserved to win but in the end we’ll make it. It’s very easy to say win all the games, but I never thought that whoever wins that game would win the title.
“The schedule is so tough for both clubs, the games are coming close and fast and the quality of the Premier League is so high that it’s going to be a big challenge. When a team comes here to play it’s always a good game and Liverpool came here to play the way they play so it’s always been good.”
City and Liverpool are likely to share all domestic silverware this season. What a treat it would be for the world of football to meet in Paris for the fourth time this season in 47 days to decide the biggest club prize ever.
https://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/football/news/liverpool-mancity-premier-league-title-26688154 Liverpool and Man City knock Real Madrid and Barcelona off their El Clasico pitch