It is a weekend of some heavyweight clashes across Europe.
Manchester United have a point to prove against visiting Liverpool; Inter need to get over their first league loss when Juventus visit the San Siro and the first El Clasico without both Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo may just send Ronald Koeman into the unemployment market-and they are all on Sunday.
Also over in France, Le Classique is on as PSG seek to continue to dominate a more historied Marseille.
Man. United v Liverpool @Old Trafford @4:30pm on Oct.24
This is not the match Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will have wanted after Wednesday’s Atalanta scare but on Sunday the Red Devils must face off against a Mohamed Salah-led Liverpool side, firing on all cylinders.
Four points separate the two teams but the gulf in class and results is huge with Solskjaer under constant pressure to prove he is an elite manager despite the Norwegian masterminding excellent results against the supposed elite managers like Jurgen Klopp and Pep Guardiola.
The 3-2 comeback win over Atalanta will have given United players confidence, but Liverpool is a totally different kettle of fish.
Current Form: Man. United [W-L-D-W-L]; Liverpool [W-W-D-W-D]
13/05/21 PRL Man. United 2 – 4 Liverpool
24/01/21 FAC Man. United 3 – 2 Liverpool
17/01/21 PRL Liverpool 0 – 0 Man. United
19/01/20 PRL Liverpool 2 – 0 Man. United
20/10/19 PRL Man. United 1 – 1 Liverpool
Prediction: Man. United 2 – 4 Liverpool
Inter Milan v Juventus @San Siro @7:45pm on Oct.24
Juventus have gone eight official matches without a loss and have not conceded in five of these matches.
Max Allegri has got his team back in defensive mode and eking out slim victories as they climb the Serie A table. Last weekend, Inter Milan suffered their first league loss away to Lazio even though the performance did not merit the 3-1 loss.
Simone Inzaghi’s first league loss should bring a positive reaction from his team and got one last Wednesday in the Champions League when they beat Sheriff 3-1.
Edin Dzeko is proving to be an adequate replacement for Romelu Lukaku and will lead the attack against the very experienced duo of Leonardo Bonucci and Giorgio Chiellini. A goal might not be enough for Juventus to get all three points.
Current Form: Inter Milan [W-L-W-D-D]; Juventus [W-W-W-W-W]
15/05/21 SEA Juventus 3 – 2 Inter Milan
09/02/21 COI Juventus 0 – 0 Inter Milan
02/02/21 COI Inter Milan 1 – 2 Juventus
17/01/21 SEA Inter Milan 2 – 0 Juventus
08/03/20 SEA Juventus 2 – 0 Inter Milan
Prediction: Inter Milan 3 – 1 Juventus
Barcelona v Real Madrid @3:15pm @Camp Nou on Oct.24
Ronald Koeman has a host of injuries that includes Ronald Araujo, Jordi Alba who picked up a foot strain against Dynamo Kyiv, Martin Braithwaite, Pedri, and Ousmane Dembele but the Catalans have not played with conviction.
Meanwhile, Carlo Ancelotti has his best players fit and the midfield trio of Luka Modric, Casemiro, and Toni Kroos are back together again with Karim Benzema and Vinicius Junior getting goals and assists.
Vinicius will trouble Mingueza just as Rodrygo will have a go at Alba or Alejandro Balde. If Barcelona will have a chance at a good result, Sergio Busquets, Gavi, and Frenkie de Jong will have to perform a midfield miracle of throttling Real’s experienced trio.
Current Form: Barcelona [W-W-L-L-W]; Real Madrid [W-L-L-D-W]
10/04/21 LAL Real Madrid 2 – 1 Barcelona
24/10/20 LAL Barcelona 1 – 3 Real Madrid
01/03/20 LAL Real Madrid 2 – 0 Barcelona
18/12/19 LAL Barcelona 0 – 0 Real Madrid
02/03/19 LAL Real Madrid 0 – 1 Barcelona
Prediction: Barcelona 1-3 Real Madrid
Marseille v PSG @Orange Velodrome @7:45pm on Oct.24
PSG have lost just once in 23 confrontations against Marseille in Ligue 1’s Le Classique- French football’s biggest fixture, since 2011.
On the weekend of El Clasico, Lionel Messi will seek to score his first Ligue 1 goal to help extend PSG’s current 10-point lead over the more historied Marseille, who are playing with more determination and passion under new manager Jorge Sampaoli.
PSG have not convinced with their displays and needed the help of a phantom penalty to beat Angers last weekend and were almost run ragged in their 3-2 win over RB Leipzig in the Champions League.
They will have to fight for the three points at the Velodrome on Sunday. PSG midfielder, Ander Herrera correctly captured the mood when he said, “We know this is not a normal match for the supporters and for the club.”
Current Form: Marseille [D-W-L-D-L]; PSG [W-W-L-W-W]
07/02/21 LI1 Marseille 0 – 2 PSG
13/01/21 TDC PSG 2 – 1 Marseille
13/09/20 LI1 PSG 0 – 1 Marseille
27/10/19 LI1 PSG 4 – 0 Marseille
17/03/19 LI1 PSG 3 – 1 Marseille
Prediction: Marseille 1-3 PSG
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