Tonight’s clash at the Etihad could go a long way in deciding which club wins the Premier League and Liverpool can take a huge step towards glory against Manchester City.
The Reds sit seven points clear of the Citizens and head up the M62 fresh from Saturday’s 5-1 win over Arsenal, a result that made it nine victories in a row for Jurgen Klopp’s men.
In contrast, the Citizens have stumbled in recent weeks, losing to Crystal Palace and Leicester City over the Christmas period.
Riyad Mahrez missed a late penalty when the pair drew 0-0 at Anfield in October but this game is likely to be a far more open affair.
City look shaky though, and with the confidence flowing through the Reds’ ranks especially in an attack that has scored at least three in five of their last six, look out for the Liverpool win.
Winning the Club World Cup was a positive way to end a mixed final six months of 2018 for Real Madrid and they can kick 2019 off with a win at Villarreal.
Despite doubts over their form, Los Blancos have actually won seven of their last eight in all competitions and head to La Ceramica to face a team who have struggled this season, sitting 18th in La Liga.
They have failed to win nine of their last 10 in the league and while Real are hardly watertight, keeping just one clean sheet in their last four, Santiago Solari’s side should have enough.
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