Struggles of Liverpool’s front three vs Man Utd could derail winning run

This article is part of Football FanCast’s The Chalkboard series, which provides a tactical insight into teams, players, managers, potential signings and more… 

Confidence should be sky-high in the Liverpool camp when they visit Old Trafford on Sunday but they will need a great deal more than that if they are to maintain their 100% record.

On the chalkboard

Despite the Reds’ success in recent years and a domination in the Premier League which has seen them lose just once in 46 matches since the beginning of last year, they always seem to struggle at Old Trafford.

To demonstrate that point, Christian Benteke is the last Liverpool player to score there from open play in the league, and the Anfield outfit have won just once at the Theatre of Dreams in the last ten years..

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There is a key reason for the lack of success, too, and that is the fact the front three often fail to meet their high standards against the Red Devils, scoring just twice in 21 games between them.

A quick glance at the stats makes for alarming reading for Liverpool fans, with Roberto Firmino, Sadio Mane and Mo Salah all struggling to perform.

It should act as a worry for Klopp, as it is rare for each one of his forwards not to be firing, and without their contribution the Reds instead will have to rely on goals from elsewhere, which they have found hard to come by.

Attacking intent

Under Klopp Liverpool have never scored more than once at United, with last year’s goalless draw critical to them losing their lead over Man City in the title race.

This time around, the German has to be more adventurous and clinical going forward, and with Paul Pogba missing for the hosts he should play a more creative, forward-thinking player in the middle, such as Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain.

That will allow Liverpool to dominate in United’s half and with another player seeking to get into the box it should open up space for the front three to work their magic.

There is worse news for Liverpool, too, as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer improved his defence over the summer with Harry Maguire and Aaron Wan-Bissaka arriving, the latter of whom could make his return from injury on Sunday.

How will Liverpool do at Old Trafford this weekend?

Win

Win

Draw

Draw

Lose

Lose

Another concern is that they haven’t been their free-flowing best this season, with only two goals from open play against Sheffield United and Leicester.

As a result, despite the contrast in form between the two sides it is a difficult match to predict, and if Liverpool can’t get their front three to hit their best form then they will likely struggle.

Article title: Struggles of Liverpool’s front three vs Man Utd could derail winning run

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