Nemanja Matic has insisted that Manchester United have prepared “very well” for their crucial trip to Anfield on Saturday.
Man United head into the clash with Jurgen Klopp’s men full of confidence following a September month that saw them maintain their place at the top of the table alongside Manchester City.
Both sides have suffered injury blows ahead of game, with Marouane Fellaini sidelined for two to three weeks and Sadio Mane out for six weeks with a hamstring injury.
Speaking to MUTV ahead of the game, Matic made it clear that United has prepared meticulously ahead of what promises to be a defining clash.
“We have prepared very well,” he said. “The manager got some videos for us to see what [Liverpool] have in their team and how we can stop them, so I’m sure we will be ready for them.”
“It’s like every game – we have to be focused for the 90 minutes, we have to take care of the small details, because they can be dangerous.
“It’s very important to know at every stage of the game what we have to do,” he added. “Every small mistake they can punish you, so our concentration is very important, but, of course, we have to use our quality to score some goals as well.”
“They always want to score goals in the first 10-15 minutes. We have to be ready for that, and we have to be very aggressive in the same way they try to be.
“I’ve played [at Anfield] a few times and they always try to be like that, but we have the quality to stop them. It’s a big derby, it’s a special game for our fans and for their fans, so, I’m sure our fans will enjoy it and support us for the whole 90 minutes and we will try to make them happy, of course.”
Mourinho will look to set up his side in a way that matches Liverpool’s intense pressing game whilst and allows for Henrikh Mkhitaryan at No.10 to receive the ball in good areas, but his main obstacle on Saturday is not a tactical one.
If United are indeed undone at Anfield, it will be down to Liverpool’s sheer speed. There is no quality to their performances. They are not tidy or disciplined, whizzing across the surface at 300 miles per hour and hoping that a gap – or a mistake – is forged in the process.
With this in mind, Matic will need to position himself cleverly at the base of midfield whilst Ander Herrera sets United’s tempo.