Are Manchester City Ready To Take Over From Manchester United As Liverpool's Main Rivals?

Andy Dillon by Andy Dillon / 02 January 2019, 10:22

LIVERPOOL fans driving to Manchester City’s Etihad Stadium tomorrow night will pass Old Trafford some way off to the right.

It might stretch a point and the eyesight to be able to see English football’s biggest stadium standing empty but the symbolism should not be disregarded.

The match between third-placed City and unbeaten Premier League leaders Liverpool has been billed as the biggest of the season so far.

A win for Liverpool clears a major obstacle between them and a first Premier League title. Even a draw is handy enough.

There's all the ingredients modern football demands for a ‘blockbuster’ clash: two teams chock full of international stars, two managers at the top of their games possessing colourful characters, vital points up for grabs. And of course an array of TV cameras.

Despite all this there is a bigger question to ask whether City could ever replace Manchester United as Liverpool’s fiercest and most ferocious rivals?

A quick look through history suggests the fractious relationship between Liverpool and Man Utd goes wider than football. It is down to industrial competition because the two cities are just 35 miles apart.

The construction of the Manchester Ship Canal in the 19th century was supposedly opposed by Liverpudlian politicians as it would give their neighbours an economic advantage and so bred resentment.

And as always feisty dock workers are blamed for the traditional animosity  - just like the seething relationship between West Ham and Millwall. Liverpool’s emergence as a major sea port was apparently another weapon of war between the two northern powerhouses.

All of which, and more, suggests there should be just as much dislike and disrespect aimed in the direction of Manchester City as there is towards United.

But with the stumbling giants at Old Trafford currently an irrelevance in terms of league titles, can the match between Liverpool and Manchester City represent a seismic shift in the north west England Cold War?

There's nowt wrong with spiky rivalries as long as they are kept within the limits of reasonable behaviour. Football is nothing without them despite the best efforts of global business to turn our national game into a tourist attraction and 21st century consumer experience.

The only problem for Manchester City is that nobody really dislikes them. Yes. it’s great to see them brought down a peg or two for the sake of fair competition.

But do they really incite the kind of widespread hostility that was once universally trained on Manchester United from all points outside Salford?

Another quick check tells you that no player has been directly transferred between Liverpool and Manchester United since the 1964 transfer of Phil Chisnall.

Three and a bit years ago Raheem Sterling quit Liverpool to join City in a highly publicised and protracted £49 million deal - underlining the feeling that economics beats local passion between these two clubs.

But if Manchester United are unable to arise from their slumber any time soon, and that is a distinct possibility despite the recent temporary upturn in results, where do Liverpool go to feed on the antipathy that fuels so many fantastic football matches and long term dynasties?

Liverpool’s rivalry against Manchester United had been built on both teams enjoying respective periods of dominance in the game, edging each other out narrowly in the hunt for trophies, with big-character managers symbolising each club.

Liverpool’s continued working class bedrock of support demands success in the old-fashioned way, with local pride still showing a band of modern-day foreign footballers the way.

The Rivalry with United stretches back into the depths of time and it cannot be easily replaced by a City team which has recently become Manchester’s banner wavers.

But it might have to.

sackrace
x
Bet £10 Get £30 in Free Bets
Exclusive Promo Code
C30
JOIN NOW
New William Hill online customers only. Min. unit stake of £10 at odds of 1/2 or greater. Only the 'win' part from EW bets will count. Free bet terms, payment method & country restrictions apply. Free bets credited as 3 x £10. Free bet stakes are not returned as part of the settlement of successful free bets. All Free Bets must be wagered within 30 days. T&C's apply, 18+ begambleaware.org
x
Up to £100 in bet credits
Exclusive Promo Code
100BET365
JOIN NOW
Up to £100 in Bet Credits for new customers at bet365. Min deposit £5 and 1x settled bet requirement to release Bet Credits. Min odds, bet and payment method exclusions apply. Returns exclude Bet Credits stake. Time limits and T&C's apply, 18+ begambleaware.org.
x
Bet £10 Get £30
Exclusive Promo Code
30f
JOIN NOW
New customers only – Minimum deposit of £10 using deposit code 30F - A qualifying bet is a ‘real money’ stake of at least £10 placed on any sports market - Minimum odds of 1/2 (1.5) - Free bets credited upon qualifying bet settlement and expire after 7 days - Free bet stakes not included in returns - Deposit balance is available for withdrawal at any time. General deposit method & withdrawal restrictions apply & full T&Cs apply.
x
Bet £20 & Get £20
Exclusive Promo Code
SPORTS20
JOIN NOW
Select 'Use a promo code' in the drop-down list in the Cashier and enter SPORTS20. Deposit £20 or more. An extra £20 will be credited immediately. The deposit and bonus must be wagered 1x onSports at 1/2 (1.5) odds or higher. General bonus terms apply. This offer expires 31 May 23:59. T&C's apply, 18+ begambleaware.org.
Next in firing line Hottest Manager Markets

Premier League

Next Manager to Leave

Arsenal

Next Manager

Barcelona

Next Manager

Bayern Munich

Next Manager

England

Next Manager

Liverpool

Next Manager

Manchester United

Next Manager

Sheffield Wednesday

Next Manager
x
See the latest Manager Odds - £20 Risk Free First bet
New Customers Only Limited to one per person. If you’ve previously had a Paddy Power account, you will not qualify for the offer. Place your FIRST bet on any Sportsbook market and if it loses we will refund your stake in CASH. Max refund for this offer is  £20. Only deposits made using Cards or Paypal will qualify for this promotion. Paddy's Rewards Club: Get a  £10 free bet when you place 5x bets of  £10+. T&C's apply, 18+ begambleaware.org.
BET HERE