Manchester City will host table-toppers Liverpool at the Etihad Stadium in the biggest fixture of the Premier League season on Thursday night to get 2019 off with a bang.
Pep Guardiola's side slipped to third place following shock defeats to Chelsea, Crystal Palace and Leicester in quick succession , while the Reds could be given an even bigger boost of encouragement to their title challenge should they register victory in Manchester.
Liverpool have the chance to go a momentous nine points clear with a win, though even a victory for Guardiola will see the Sky Blues remain four points behind their Merseyside counterpart.
|Game||Man City vs Liverpool|
|Date||Thursday, January 3|
|Time||8pm GMT / 3pm ET|
|Stream (US)||fubo TV (7-day free trial)|
TV Channel, Live Stream & How To Watch
In the United States (US), the game can be watched live and on-demand with fuboTV (7-day free trial) .
New users can sign up for a free seven-day trial of the live sports streaming service, which can be accessed via iOS, Android, Chromecast, Amazon Fire TV, Roku and Apple TV as well as on a web browser.
|US TV channel||Online stream|
|NBCSN||fubo TV (7-day free trial)|
In the United Kingdom (UK), the game can be watched live on Sky Sports and livestreamed on Sky GO Extra.
|UK TV channel||Online stream|
|Sky Sports Main Event||Sky GO Extra|
Squads & Team News
|Position||Man City players|
|Defenders||Stones, Laporte, Otamendi, Kompany, Sandler, Mendy, Walker, Danilo|
|Midfielders||Fernadinho, Gundogan, Delph, Zinchenko, Foden, D. Silva, Diaz, B. Silva, Mahrez|
|Forwards||Aguero, Jesus, Sterling, Sane|
Fernandinho has been handed the start despite being involved in a red-card challenge by Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg in their most recent outing against Southampton.
Kevin De Bruyne faced a late fitness test following recovery from a long-term knee injury but made the bench, while Ilkay Gundogan and Leroy Sane have also been given the green light.
Confirmed Man City XI: Ederson; Danilo, Stones, Kompany, Laporte; B. Silva, Fernandinho, D. Silva; Sterling, Aguero, Sane.
|Goalkeepers||Alisson, Mignolet, Grabara|
|Defenders||Clyne, Alexander-Arnold, Van Dijk, Lovren, Robertson, Moreno|
|Midfielders||Fabinho, Wijnaldum, Keita, Henderson, Lallana, Camacho, Jones|
|Forwards||Mane, Salah, Firmino, Sturridge, Shaqiri, Origi|
Defenders Joe Gomez and Joel Matip have been ruled out of the clash at the Etihad due to injury.
However, while James Milner was a doubt after missing out on the fixtures against Newcastle and Arsenal, he has been handed a spot in the XI.
Alberto Moreno was fit enough for the bench while Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is only expected to return to training following a long-term ACL injury recovery in February.
Confirmed Liverpool XI: Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Lovren, Van Dijk, Robertson; Henderson, Milner, Wijnaldum; Salah, Firmino, Mane.
Betting & Match Odds
Man City are priced at odds of winning 21/10 according to bet 365 , while a draw is available at 11/4. A win for Liverpool is set for 13/5.
Liverpool have everything to play for when they travel to Eastlands on Thursday evening and will be heading into the fixture with massive confidence following their 5-1 demolition of Arsenal just before the turn of the year .
Jurgen Klopp's side have been in lethal form in the Premier League in recent weeks, having recorded nine straight domestic wins – and their 10th could come against last season's champions.
Man City recorded three defeats in their last five matches – which all took place in the month of December – and the pressure will be on them to continue to challenge for the title as even a win against the Reds will only take them to second above Tottenham Hotspur.
Seven points separate the two sides ahead of the scintillating showdown, with Liverpool still maintaining their perfect unbeaten run.
A win for the Reds would be massive for a Liverpool side who have been chasing their first top-flight title in 1990, and the fixture will mark almost a year from when Klopp's team put a stop to Guardiola's unbeaten run in the Premier League at Anfield.
On Thursday evening, however, the narrative could switch with Man City now in prime position to put an end to Liverpool's unbeaten league form, though the likes of Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane all scored against Arsenal at Anfield in their previous outing.
Man City captain Vincent Kompany refused to entertain the notion that a loss would force his team to concede the title, telling reporters :
“We overcame eight points in six games in the past. I don't live with that scenario in my head, of what happens if we lose.
“The moment I have to face the situation, at that moment I'll see what the options are.
“I promise you now - when you are 10 points behind, all of a sudden, if there are not many teams between you and first, it only takes one team to start having a bad month and you will be back in.”