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Analysis Opinion Insight

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

North West at War : : Liverpool vs Manchester

This weekends big games see Manchester United vs Everton and Liverpool host Manchester City. The economic rivalry dates back to the creation of the Manchester Shipping Canal, and the prosperity enjoyed by the Mancunians came at the cost of the Liverpudlians. The footbaling side of things really kicked off the rivalry, with all four sides enjoying periods of national dominance.Everton have accumulated nine titles over time, and City, who have two titles, are the smaller clubs of the Northwest footballing powerhouse cities, trailing big-brothers,Liverpool and United with 18 titles each, with both sides looking to gain the edge to reclaim bragging rights.
A more narrow focus on this season shows Liverpool need to win to get back into the Champions League place-race, Everton need points to correct a bad start, City need points to improve their chances of european football next season ahead of the other "pretenders" Villa, Spurs, Everton and Sunderland. Last but not least, United need the points to keep the pressure on Arsenal and Chelsea ahead of them, who have Sunderland away, and Wolves at home, respectively.

The hopes of Man City and Liverpool, who are effectively fighting each other, and Spurs and Villa, for 4th place, rest on the outcome of the games against each other, as they'd most probably have similar records agains weaker and stronger opposition. Barring a complete capitulation, this season's title winner will be out of the current top three, leaving only one position open for the Champions League qualification 3rd round.

Such intercity battles will continue to bring back spirit to the English game, which many locals complain has become to commercialized and antisocial. Birmingham vs Manchester, Liverpool vs London, etc etc would prove to be successes, if the fixture computer allows.

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