It is mistakenly called the Derby of England, because it is the biggest rivalry in English football. But it is also the most watched football match in the world. It is of course Manchester United – Liverpool, the ultimate shock of the Premier League, which is disputed this season from the 3rd day, while the two teams are in difficulty. When and how to attend? We will explain everything to you.
They are the two most successful English clubs, by far. Liverpool and Manchester United are historically above the pack, and hate each other all the more. A rivalry first of all geographical, the two cities being separated by only 55 kilometers. But which quickly became sporting, making these meetings even more expected, and even tense, than the derbies of Manchester, against City for United, or Liverpool, against Everton for Liverpool FC. And if the Reds have the most extensive record, thanks to a more considerable success in Europe (six Champions League for Liverpool against three for Manchester United), at the national level, it is the Red Devils who win, with 20 titles of champions of England, against… 19 for his rival! And it’s all thanks to one man: Sir Alex Ferguson.
Because the story is well known, and is part of all those that forge the legend of the Premier League, definitely making it a championship apart. Shortly after his appointment as head of Manchester United in 1986, the fiery Scottish coach said he wanted « get Liverpool off their f****** perch ». It must be said that at the time, the Reds already had … 16 titles, when the Red Devils barely had 7. We thought the challenge then impossible, and yet. Liverpool will only be champion of England in 1988 and 1990, while between 1993 and 2013, so in 20 years, Manchester United will accumulate 13 titles! Liverpool therefore spent 30 years without being champions, before the long-awaited title finally won in 2020, and the balance of power was completely reversed. In the meantime, Arsenal, Chelsea and then Manchester City have risen to form with the two giants, and Tottenham now, what is called the Bix Six.
Complicated beginnings for Manchester United and Liverpool
But if Liverpool have descended from their perch, Manchester United have become more and more feverish on theirs for the past few seasons. And the start of this 2022-23 campaign does not reassure the supporters at all. The teammates of a Cristiano Ronaldo who does not hide his desire to leave lost their first two meetings: 1-2 at Old Trafford against Brighton, then 4-0 (!) at Brentford. A real nightmare, which made the supporters fear the worst, as the clash against Liverpool loomed on the third day. Especially since last year, Klopp’s players inflicted two spankings on their historic rivals: 5-0 at Old Trafford, and 4-0 at Anfield. What not to be very confident at kick-off …
Except that on the side of Liverpool things are only going a little better: the team which almost won everything last season (winner of the FA Cup and the Carabao Cup, defeat in the Champions League final and 2nd in the Premier League 1 point behind Manchester City), started their season with two draws: 1-1 at Fulham, and 2-2 against Crystal Palace. Worst of all, there are a slew of injuries (Thiago Alcantara, Konaté, Jota, Matip, Jones…) and the suspension for three matches of the flagship rookie, Darwin Núñez, expelled against Crystal Palace. There is therefore uncertainty on both sides, but certainty for the spectators: there will still be a show, and one of the two teams will not only be able to start its season, but also run a little more opponent.
Manchester United – Liverpool, an incredible shock to follow from 8:30 p.m. with the Plateau Sport on Canal+ Sport, then the kick-off given at 8:55 p.m. on the same channel, which now broadcasts the Premier League exclusively.
Sources: Premier League, Canal+