Ex-Arsenal star tips Liverpool to take point off Manchester City

Former Arsenal star Paul Merson has backed Liverpool to earn a draw away to Manchester City on Monday.

Both teams will get an early test of their title aspirations when they square off at the Etihad Stadium next week, but the trip is a daunting one for the Reds.

Brendan Rodgers's side were beaten 2-1 by City on Boxing Day last year, but the Reds were unfortunate to see a Raheem Sterling goal incorrectly ruled out for offside.

Both sides got off to winning starts last Sunday as City edged out Newcastle 2-0 at St James' Park after the Reds had beaten Southampton 2-1 at Anfield earlier in the day.

However, with Rodgers still trying to get his new signings to bed into his squad, a visit to Manuel Pellegrini's side this early represents an even more difficult challenge than usual.

Adam Lallana is still out injured, while Lazar Markovic is expected to come into contention, and Mario Balotelli is unlikely to be signed in time from AC Milan to be registered for the game against his former club.

Joe Allen could come in for Lucas Leiva for the visit to City, and Merson thinks that Rodgers's side will take a share of the spoils on Monday evening.

He told Sky Sports: "This is a big game. Liverpool were lucky to beat Southampton, but winning when you’re not playing well is the name of the game.

"You can’t play well for 38 games. As for Man City, they were comfortable against Newcastle and had more gears left. I’m giving Liverpool a chance here because it’s so early in the season.

"If this game was half-way through the season with a few injuries and Champions League matches taking their toll then it might be different, but I think they might get a result in August.

"There should be goals because Liverpool can play on the counter-attack and they’ll have a go when City come at them. Prediction? 2-2 draw."

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