Manchester City and Liverpool clash in what is the game of the season so far this evening, and Tony Cascarino has named his combined XI featuring the best players from the two teams.
Liverpool currently sit top of the Premier League with City in third, seven points behind Jurgen Klopp’s league leaders.
The reigning champions have failed to match the heights they reached last season, but the title is still well within their grasp, and a home win tonight will move them to within four points of the Reds.
In the build-up to the match there has been a tonne of discussion about which team has the strongest squad and the best players, and it is a discussion that will rumble on given how hard it is to decide between Ederson, Kevin De Bruyne and Sergio Aguero, or Alisson, Virgil van Dijk and Mohamed Salah.
Cascarino, who has already backed City to beat Liverpool tonight and go on to win the Premier League title, has now had his say on the respective squads and has named his combined Man City and Liverpool XI.
Writing in The Times, Cascarino selected just four players from Pep Guardiola’s side, with the remaining seven coming from Liverpool, including the goalkeeper, Alisson, and the majority of the defence and attack.
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The only position in which Cascarino rates City’s squad above Liverpool’s is midfield, with Fernandinho and David Silva joined by Georginio Wijnaldum – making it two City players to a single one from Liverpool.
Exceptional praise was directed at Virgil van Dijk, the Reds defender, who Cascarino called the ‘easiest player to pick’ in his combined XI.
“The easiest player to pick,” Cascarino wrote. “Everything I could say about him is already known. He has superb composure, skill, pace, heading ability and power. A colossus.”
Cascarino’s combined XI: Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Van Dijk, Laporte, Robertson; Fernandinho, Wijnaldum, Silva; Mane, Salah, Sterling