Phil Thompson has picked out Liverpool duo James Milner and Jordan Henderson as the two key players in the game against Manchester United on Sunday.
The Sky Sports pundit admitted that the Reds will dare not lose at Old Trafford when they put their perfect Premier League record on the line, and said the clash is the “biggest game in world football”.
Thompson claimed that Milner and Henderson will be two of Jurgen Klopp’s most important players in the game, and picked out their influence ahead of the likes of Virgil van Dijk and the prolific front three.
“What matters most is that the players understand this is the biggest game in world football and they dare not lose,” he wrote in the Daily Mail.
“My fear is that some of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s players will produce their best performance of the season and their fans will be asking ‘Where’s that been?’ That’s why Jordan Henderson and James Milner will be the most important players in Liverpool’s dressing room.”
“Not Roberto Firmino, Sadio Mane or Virgil van Dijk because Henderson and Milner will underline what this game means.”
Thompson is spot on, no matter how each team is currently performing, it will count for little when they cross the white line on Sunday. Manchester United will be more determined than ever to get their season on track by derailing Liverpool’s charge at the top, and this is a clash that will seriously test their title credentials. It is natural to rely on your most experienced players, and both Milner and Henderson will have a massive role to play. The Reds’ duo will be important both on and off the pitch, especially Henderson. The Liverpool captain has excelled in the heart of midfield so far, making 2.6 tackles every 90 minutes in the Premier League according to WhoScored, as he disrupts opposing sides as well as dictating the Reds’ style when on the ball. Klopp will be counting on his players to continue their form in Manchester, but the likes of Henderson will play a massive role in that should they continue their 100% record.