Liverpool, Manchester City Face-defining moments in FA Cup clash

27 Apr 2022 | 08:05 | Football

Liverpool will place their unprecedented quadruple bid against treble-chasing Manchester City on Saturday in an FA Cup semi-final that will make or break a sentence’s immortal football dreams. club. Jurgen Klopp’s men are vying to become the first English team to win all four major trophies in a single season. They lifted the League Cup in February and advanced to the final four of the Champions League after overcoming fears of late in the quarter-final second leg against Benfica on Wednesday.

With Liverpool expected to see off Spain’s Villarreal in the semi-finals of Europe’s elite club competition, it is Premier League leaders Man City that will pose a major obstacle to their ambitions. .

City are just one point above their Premier League rivals with seven games remaining after last weekend’s 2-2 draw.

Pep Guardiola’s side are also on the hunt for the Champions League crown and could face Liverpool in the final if they beat Real Madrid in the semi-finals.

Man City have a rare feat of their own as they look to become the second English team to win the prestigious treble of the Premier League, Champions League and FA Cup.

The big goals of both Man City and Liverpool mean the stakes cannot be higher as they face each other for the second time in a week, this time at Wembley for a place in the FA Cup final.

One team will leave the high national stadium, the other team must quickly regroup.

After closing the gap on City from 14 points in January, Liverpool are responding to Klopp’s desire to be “as uncomfortable as possible” with the Premier League champions.

The two meetings in the league this season have both ended in a 2-2 draw and could lead to extra time and penalties this weekend.

“Last week Man City were really strong, we weren’t at our best,” Klopp said. “I want to see a game where we are also at our best.”

He added: “The boys did a lot of good in the game, but I really think that in some positions we can really perform on a completely different level.”

‘Many difficult games’

As Klopp has admitted, Liverpool were somewhat lucky to get out of the Etihad Stadium unscathed last Sunday but they could have a significant advantage for the rematch.

Klopp could start with Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Virgil van Dijk on the bench in Wednesday’s 3-3 draw against Benfica, keeping his three key players fresh in the last game against Benfica. Man City.

In contrast, Man City have been battered and bruised after a poor 0-0 draw against Atletico Madrid in the second leg of the Champions League quarter-final.

Although City have advanced to the last four, Guardiola said they are in “huge trouble” after Kevin De Bruyne and Kyle Walker limped through injuries and Phil Foden ended the game with a bandaged head. bunch of.

City had planned to travel directly to London from Madrid to prepare for the match against Liverpool but their Spain midfielder Rodri admits their busy schedule is taking a heavy toll.

“The calendar is crazy. We had two games against Atletico, the day after that against Liverpool. You have to work 100% and now we have Liverpool again, too many difficult games at once but it is what it is. , “I said.

“We have to be mentally fresh, recover and show our best form in the next match.”

In Sunday’s semi-final, Chelsea face Crystal Palace looking to show they’ve recovered from a painful Champions League defeat to Real Madrid.

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Chelsea overturned a 3-1 deficit in the first leg to go 4-3 on aggregate at the Bernabeu on Tuesday, only for Real to get a late equalizer and beat the holders with a half-time goal. extra.

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