Manchester City welcome Liverpool to the Etihad Stadium as they attempt to claw back more points in the race for the Premier League title. The blues lie in third place, seven points behind the reds, but can cut that to just four with a win on Thursday night. How likely is a City win and what is the blues home record like against the Merseysiders? Let’s take a look.
Thursday’s match will be the 105th between the two in Manchester in various competitions, including the league, Champions League and the North Region War League. Out of all those, the blues have only won 35 home matches against the reds, drawing 29 and losing 40. A depressing statistics that the blues could really do with rectifying, starting on Thursday.
The two teams first met in Manchester in April 1896 in Division Two, which ended in a 1-1 draw. City would have to endure seven years and three defeats, before finally recording their first win – 3-2 in October 1903.
City’s most recent home victory over Liverpool came last season, when the blues thumped the reds 5-0, but they also lost the last game to be played when Liverpool beat City 2-1 in the Champions league second leg, which saw the Merseysiders progress to the semi-final. Despite putting five past the reds last season, that result is not the biggest win achieved by the blues, That honour came in September 1935, when the bleus beat Liverpool 6-0 in a First Division clash. Liverpool gained revenge five years later when they beat City 7-3 at Maine Road in the West Region War League in 1940.
The longest unbeaten run achieved by any City team in this fixture came between September 1969 and September 1974, when the blues won four and drew seven encounters at Maine Road. This was almost emulated between August 1991 and January 2001, when the blues went six matches unbeaten against the reds. The longest winning streak by the blues is just four matches long, achieved between December 1933 and March 1937, when the bleus notched up 2-1, 3-1, 6-0 and 5-1 home victories.
By comparison, the longest winless run is seven matches, which were played between November 1948 and August 1962. The run included five successive defeats and two draws. Incredibly, that run of five home defeats isn’t the longest the blues have suffered. Between August 1978 and April 1983, City lost six straight home games to Liverpool, and if they hadn’t won the home fixture 1-0 on Boxing Day 1985, the winless run would have been the longest on record, as the blues lost the following four home matches, meaning City lost ten out of eleven league and cup games.
City have only kept 22 clean sheets at home to Liverpool, but have failed to score on 25 occasions, and another depressing statistic is that between October 1979 and March 1991, the blues only scored 2 goals in ten home matches against the reds. City have faired much better in recent years, with the last time they failed to score at home to Liverpool in the league coming in February 2010, so there’s some encouragement there.
The two teams have met nine times in Manchester in January, with the reds winning seven of those fixtures, while the blues have managed just a solitary victory, but have never met on 3rd January before 2019.
From a City point of view, the statistics don’t look too promising, but as we all know, statistic go out of the window as soon as the whistle blows. Will City be closer to Liverpool tomorrow night, or will the reds be out of sight? Let us know your thoughts.