It’s a rematch against Manchester City tomorrow as Liverpool take on their title rivals in the semi final of the FA Cup at Wembley. The winner will take on Chelsea/Crystal Palace in the final. Here’s a preview of the game.

These two sides put on a widely acclaimed show of technical and tactical excellence at the Etihad last Sunday. They cancelled each other out on the day with neither side able to strike a fatal blow to the other’s title hopes. That’s twice now they’ve drawn this season.

That changes tomorrow as a winner will have to be crowned. Be that after ninety minutes, after extra time, or indeed after a penalty shootout. There’s been little to choose between Liverpool and Manchester City for a number of years now, with Klopp and Guardiola pushing themselves to new heights by trying to outdo each other.

Pep has had the upper hand on the domestic front, winning three league titles and a smattering of League Cup and FA Cup trophies to boot. Jürgen has had a bit of success domestically but crucially cam boast silverware on the continent as well.

The two outstanding coaches of their generation seem set to go head to head for every available trophy this season. The Citizens were knocked out of the League Cup by West Ham United and Liverpool took full advantage, going on to win the competition.

They defeated Thomas Tuchel’s Chelsea at Wembley on penalties back in February. The Reds also lie a point behind City in the Premier League table after recovering a 14 point gap. With seven fixtures remaining, Pep knows his side has to be perfect in order to lift another title.

This is why he was slightly annoyed that his side didn’t take their chance to kill Liverpool off on Sunday. That Mahrez miss in stoppage time could come back to bite them in the rear end and he knows it. He called Liverpool “a pain in the a**” for a reason.

There is also the distinct possibility of a showdown in the Champions League final, with City paired against perennial winners Real Madrid, whilst Liverpool battle it out with Unai Emery’s Villareal in the semis. This newborn rivalry could be taken up several notches if the two meet in Paris.

That can all wait though, on the itinerary now is a showdown to earn the right to play in the FA Cup final. Liverpool haven’t played in one since the 2012 defeat to Chelsea. For their last FA Cup win, you’d have to go all the way back to the “Steven Gerrard final” in 2006.

City meanwhile last featured in the final back in 2019 when they beat Watford to lift their sixth FA Cup trophy. They are one away from equalling Liverpool’s haul and tomorrow would take them a step closer if they can knock out the Reds.

These two sides last met at Wembley in the 2019 Community Shield, with City winning on penalties after the game finished 1-1. Pep’s outfit has gotten the better of this encounter in recent times. The Citizens are unbeaten in their last five matches against Liverpool.

Two big wins and three draws (all in the league) underline a shift in the upper hand where this fixture is concerned. Jürgen hasn’t masterminded a victory over City since the 3-1 win at Anfield back in 2019, a victory which fuelled the Reds’ march to a first league title in three decades.

It’s about time we got one over on the blue side of Manchester. In both stalemates this season, Liverpool haven’t played to the very best of their ability. They were timid and rattled in the first halves of both encounters and were perhaps lucky to still be alive in the match.

Those improved second half displays will have to be produced from the start tomorrow if the Reds are to reach a second domestic final this season. The way I see it, City played very well in both games but could only come away with a share of the spoils.

Should Liverpool rise to the occasion and play their game, I think they have enough firepower in attack to make it count and get the win. Both sides are in good form coming into the fixture, with both sealing qualification to the last four of the Champions League with second leg stalemates.

City’s tie at Atleti required more energy and might have taken a bit out of them. That perhaps may be the slight edge needed to overcome them at Wembley tomorrow. Expect another classic.

Team News

Diogo Jota sustained a knock against Benfica on Wednesday night but is expected to be fit for the match. Everyone else is fit and available, with Van Dijk, Alexander-Arnold and Robertson completely rested in midweek.

Ruben Dias is back for City after six weeks on the sidelines with a hamstring injury. He was named on the bench on Wednesday and could come in from the start here. Kyle Walker and Kevin De Bruyne are doubts having gone off injured against Atleti.

Key Players

Trent Alexander-Arnold

The 23 year old was targeted and double teamed in the first half at the Etihad. He had Foden and Cancelo both playing on his shoulder and attacking the space behind him. He still provided a moment of genius when he calmly cut back for Jota to equalise.

He is likely to be targeted again and will have to strike the balance between keeping his flank on lock defensively whilst still providing the creative spark for his side going forward. He will come into the game rested and will have to be at his best if Liverpool are to triumph.

Riyad Mahrez

With De Bruyne likely to miss out and Foden possibly rotated, Mahrez will carry the most threat for City. He is their topscorer this season having netted 22 goals and provided 7 assists in 39 appearances in all competitions. He hasn’t found the net in any of his last 6 appearances for club or country however.

Mohamed Salah

Another player who is on a bit of a drought, Mo has only scored 1 goal in his last 11 appearances for club and country. He is without a goal from open play in his last 12. He provided a delightful assist on Sunday though and will once again look to deliver on the big stage. It wouldn’t be a bad time to end that dry spell infront of goal.



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