Previewing the Liverpool-United derby

October, 14, 2011
10/14/11
12:39
PM ET

The two English clubs with the most league titles meet Saturday at Anfield on ESPN2 and ESPN3 at 7:40 a.m. ET. Here are five notes to get you ready for the showdown between Liverpool and Manchester United.

• Manchester United won its record 19th league title last year, surpassing Liverpool's mark of 18. United has won 12 league crowns since Liverpool last triumphed in 1990. Liverpool had held the league record since passing Arsenal with its ninth championship in 1976.

• Liverpool has defended Anfield well against Manchester United, winning its last three league games there. This is Liverpool's best home league stretch versus United since the Reds won seven straight from 1972 to 1979. United hasn't lost four straight away games to a single opponent since the Premier League began in 1992.

• The first goal will likely be critical. Liverpool is unbeaten (8-0-1) in its last nine games when scoring first, and has lost 20 of its last 22 when conceding first. Manchester United has opened the scoring in all seven league games and is unbeaten in 12 straight when striking first, last losing at Chelsea in March.

• Manchester United has scored 24 goals this season, matching the Premier League scoring record for the first seven games of a campaign. United is the eighth team with at least 20 goals at this point in an EPL season, but none of the previous seven teams went on to win the league title.

• Mexican forward Javier Hernández returns from national-team duty after agreeing to a five-year contract extension with United this week. Since he joined the club last season, eight of Hernández's 15 league goals have been in the 73rd minute or later, tied with Robin van Persie for most in the Premier League in that span.

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