After all the billing of a top of the table clash, Liverpool and Manchester United played out a disappointing 0-0 draw at Anfield on Sunday afternoon.
Liverpool came into the game in a disappointing run of form, without a win in their last three league games, and only having scored once in those outings, a run which has seen them surrender the lead at the top of the table to a United side who were unbeaten in their last 12 Premier League fixtures.
It was, however, Jurgen Klopp’s side who settled into the game the quicker of the two, with the league leaders looking content to sit back and weather the storm.
While Liverpool had the ball in the Manchester United half for large spells of the game, their fabled front three of Salah, Firmino and Mane looked far from their sharp best, with David de Gea rarely tested throughout the 90 minutes.
Despite not being at their best, it was Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side who perhaps had the best opportunities to steal all three points, though Bruno Fernandes and Paul Pogba both saw close-range efforts well saved by Alisson.
Speaking afterwards, the Norwegian admitted his side weren’t at their best but felt they did enough to win the game.
Man Utd's record against the 'Big Six' this season in the Premier League:
Man Utd 1-6 Spurs
Man Utd 0-0 Chelsea
Man Utd 0-1 Arsenal
Man Utd 0-0 Man City
Liverpool 0-0 Man Utd
Winless in all five games. pic.twitter.com/JoFuiXny9e
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) January 17, 2021
“I think we grew in the game and toward the end it was there for us to win,” he told Sky Sports. “We created two massive chances and it was two brilliant saves by the keeper.
“We can play better than this, we can be more composed, we can have the ball more. We had to defend really often today. There are a couple of things for us to improve on.”
Solskjaer sprung a surprise by playing Paul Pogba in an unfamiliar position on the right-wing, and the United boss was pleased with the performance of the club record signing.
“I thought Paul was absolutely brilliant today. We knew he had to do a job defensively to help us with Robertson and I thought he was excellent and should have got the goal his performance deserved.”
Next up for United is a midweek trip to Fulham, before the two sides renew rivalries as the Red Devils host Liverpool at Old Trafford in the FA Cup fourth round next weekend.