Liverpool handed top four boost – 24 hours before kickoff vs. Man United

Liverpool were given a big boost in their hopes of a top-four finish before a ball is even kicked in their Sunday clash with Man United at Anfield.

The Reds take on an in-form Man United on Sunday evening looking to continue their late-season push for a Champions League spot.

After a poor first half of the campaign and an even worse stretch on the turn of the year, Liverpool are now four games unbeaten in the Premier League, winning three of those.

They head into their meeting with United sitting 10 points behind their historic rivals, but victory would significantly reduce that with 13 games left to play afterwards.

For Jurgen Klopp and his side, though, the immediate focus will not be catching third-placed United, more so those between them in fourth and fifth.

Fortunately, Saturday saw both Newcastle and Tottenham fail to pick up a single point, giving Liverpool a huge opportunity.

* Premier League table as of Saturday evening.

Newcastle continued their predictable decline with a 2-0 loss to Man City, with Eddie Howe’s side now having lost their last three in all competitions and not won in five league games.

Victory over United would see Liverpool leapfrog Newcastle into fifth, albeit having played a game more than the state-financed club.

Meanwhile, Tottenham suffered a 1-0 defeat at the hands of Wolves, three days after dropping out of the Carabao Cup to Championship club Sheffield United.

Wolves put their midweek frustration behind them to earn a vital win at Molineux, with Adama Traore scoring the decisive goal.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Wednesday, March 1, 2023: Liverpool's manager Jürgen Klopp reacts during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Wolverhampton Wanderers FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

And now if Liverpool win against United they will go three points behind Tottenham in fourth – with a game in hand over the north London side.

Of course, there are many ifs involved for this to come to fruition, but two results elsewhere have only heightened the significance of the Reds’ latest league clash.

Still, if they are successful against United, overtaking Newcastle and closing on Tottenham, the glory could be short-lived as Fulham have a similar opportunity when they face Brentford on Monday night.

With Brighton thrashing West Ham 4-0 on Saturday, too – moving to within a point of Liverpool with a game in hand – the race for the top four remains a tight one between as many as nine teams.