There is not rivalry in English football bigger than the one between Liverpool and Manchester United. The most successful clubs in the history of the game in the country have off late been out of sorts and with both teams struggling for consistency, this clash in the Round of 16 of the Europe League has become all the more interesting.
There are a number of stars in both teams but neither team has been able to burst into the top four. But some individual performances are on show when the teams are in action. Here is the Liverpool and Manchester United combined XI for tonight:
David de Gea (Manchester United):
Arguably the best shot stopper in the league, De Gea has won United a number of points on the course of this season and is undoubtedly far better than his counterpart Simon Mignolet in Liverpool’s goal.
Nathaniel Clyne (Liverpool):
A picture of clam and solidarity at the back, Clyne has been sensational at the back for the Reds who have had to rotate their back four in wake of a number of injuries in recent times.
Dejan Lovren (Liverpool):
Though he had a bad start to his career at Anfield, Lovren has grown in confidence under new manager Jurgen Klopp and now looks like the solid center back Liverpool are searching for the past two seasons.
Chris Smalling (Manchester United):
A solid presence at the back for United, Smalling has been one of the best defenders for the Old Trafford outfit and has helped his team to a number of victories.
Daley Blind (Manchester United):
Though played in a number of positions by Van Gaal, Blind has been the calming presence at the back the club needs in pressure situations. He has played all over the back line and is a versatile defender.
Morgan Schneiderlin (Manchester United):
Schneiderlin had a slow start to his United career with injuries but since he was back in the team, he has been excellent in holding mid-field role where he has run the mid-field for the Red Devils in comfortable fashion.
Emre Can (Liverpool):
The most improved player under Jurgen Klopp. Can who is now playing in a preferred mid-field role has been pulling the strings for his side in the middle of the park and looks like a great player for the future.
Phillipe Coutinho (Liverpool):
The most creative player in the Liverpool squad, Coutinho has the ability to make things happen out of nowhere and has been the lynchpin for the club over the last two years.
Roberto Firmino (Liverpool):
Since the turn of the year, Firmino has contributed to more goals than any other player in the Premier League. He has now settled into the English style of play and is scoring for fun at the moment.
Anthony Martial (Manchester United):
The best player for United in the final third, young forward Anthony Martial has been sensational up front for the Red Devils. His skill and pace are too hot to handle for most Premier League defenders and he will surely grow up to be one of the best in Europe if he can keep up his form.
Daniel Sturridge (Liverpool):
Though played less than half of the season, Sturridge is the heart beat of this Liverpool attack. He is a proven goal scorer and can make things happen in the final third for the Reds. He needs to find consistency but is a dangerous player in his night.