Juan Mata has expressed his excitement ahead of Manchester United’s visit to Anfield next week, labelling the contest as one of the greatest clashes of the season.
Jose Mourinho’s side head into the game in sixth spot, three points adrift of Liverpool, but a win could see them move up to third.
Writing in his weekly blog, Mata made it clear that there is a clear determination amongst United players to record a third consecutive win at Anfield on October 17th.
“This has been a different week due to the international break, but it’s now over and we are already focused on the Premier League, where we have one of the biggest games of the year: our visit to Anfield Road,” he wrote.
“As you know, this is a special game for the Manchester United fans and, in general, one of the greatest clashes of the season in European football.
“I have been lucky to enjoy it in the past and I can assure you that this is a game like no other. This time, with both teams in a good moment, I hope we see a spectacular football match.
“We are really looking forward to showing what we are capable of, to play well and be competitive. After our last draw, the team wants to play as soon as possible to get the three points, as we did the last two times we played in Anfield in the Premier League, and to confirm that we are on the right track. I really hope so..”
It may only be October, but United’s visit to Anfield feels like a defining chapter for both sides this season. For Jurgen Klopp’s side, this is an opportunity to demonstrate that they are more than just a sporadically brilliant – but ultimately inconsistent – outfit; for Mourinho’s men, this is a chance to silence the wall of noise that has greeted their mixed start to the 2016/17.
Liverpool will approach this game in a quintessentially Klopp-like way: full of aggression and tenacity, hellbent on grabbing United by the jugular. If the visitors can weather this early storm, quieten the atmosphere and take control of proceedings, a truly absorbing encounter could unfold.