Paul Merson thinks two Liverpool stars will ‘struggle’ against Manchester City
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Paul Merson has named the two Liverpool players that he thinks will struggle against Manchester City ahead of the much anticipated Premier League clash this weekend.
City will arrive at Anfield looking to inflict further damage on Jurgen Klopp’s already wounded Reds after their last outing in the top flight ended in a bitterly disappointing 3-2 defeat against Arsenal at the Emirates.
However, Liverpool picked up a little bit of momentum after they thrashed Rangers 7-1 at Ibrox during the midweek Champions League fixtures, whilst City rested their star man Erling Haaland in their 0-0 draw away at FC Copenhagen.
This will mean that the Norway superstar will be fresh and ready to help his side take on Liverpool, in a bid to pull themselves 16 points clear of the Anfield club with a victory.
Former Arsenal player Merson believes that Liverpool defensive duo Joe Gomez and Virgil van Dijk are in for an afternoon to forget.
He said on Sportskeeda: “Joe Gomez was all over the place at full-back against Arsenal as well, and can't see anything but a struggle against Foden and Grealish this weekend.
“Erling Haaland will be up against Virgil van Dijk this weekend, and I think the latter will find it a little difficult against the Premier League's leading goalscorer. This will be an interesting challenge for both players.”
Merson also spoke about the likes of Roberto Firmino and Darwin Nunez finding form at the right time but insisted that the Reds will struggle without the injured Luis Diaz.
Merson added: “With Roberto Firmino and Darwin Nunez hitting form, the front three have suddenly come to life for Liverpool. With Luis Diaz injured, however, someone will have to fill in on the left. It's hard for players to play out of position in big games., but I don't see how you can keep Nunez out of the side.
“If Firmino plays a slightly withdrawn role, Liverpool can play all four of their forwards. They had too many people up front against Arsenal, and someone needs to help out in midfield. When Firmino doesn't start, four forwards in a line-up doesn't work out very well for Liverpool.”
Merson went on to predict a 3-1 win for the champions.
He said: “Liverpool have been so spoiled by brilliance over the years that a couple of players being out of form has caused mayhem. Yesterday’s(Wednesday) result will make a difference for Liverpool, and Mohamed Salah will be a completely different player this weekend.
“Do I see Liverpool winning? No. They're still letting in too many goals. Manchester City have got Haaland and will still win a lot of games this season. I don't see how Liverpool are going to stop them from scoring at least two goals this weekend.”