Sky Sports pundit Paul Merson believes that Liverpool can take a major step towards winning the Premier League title if they beat Man City this weekend.
The Merseyside giants have started the season in brilliant fashion as they’ve won 10 of their opening 11 games to move six points clear of rivals and reigning champions City.
Despite seemingly being on the verge of their first loss of the campaign at Aston Villa at the weekend, they scored two late goals to seal all three points and protect their lead over Pep Guardiola’s men who also scrambled a come-from-behind victory at home against Southampton.
Now the two sides meet at Anfield on Sunday evening in what promises to be a thriller, but Merson believes that if Liverpool secure the win, it could be curtains for Man City’s hopes of stopping them from taking their crown this year.
“Liverpool and Manchester City were both on the floor against Aston Villa and Southampton but yet again they found the answer. Both clubs are relentless in their pursuit of the title but I don’t see a way back for City if Liverpool win on Super Sunday,” he wrote in his Sky Sports column.
“Liverpool will move nine points clear with a win at Anfield and, as we saw at Villa Park, they simply don’t know how to lose, so I just don’t where they would lose three matches to let City back in.
“People say it’s early in the season but that argument winds me up. The league starts in August, every game is of vital importance and if Liverpool move nine points clear it would probably be in City’s best interest to turn their attention to winning the Champions League.
“City don’t have to win the match, it will be game on in the title race if they remain six points behind, but they cannot afford to lose.”
There is a case to back Merson’s points above and for City to overturn a nine-point deficit given their vulnerabilities so far this season would be a huge effort from them and a major slip-up from Liverpool.
However, their recent games have arguably shown Liverpool have weaknesses of their own too, and so with so many games to go and with injuries still possible to key players, perhaps this weekend’s showdown at Anfield won’t be entirely decisive.