Manchester United will renew their storied rivalry with Liverpool in a epic Premier League clash on Saturday and Red Devils midfielder Juan Mata has made no bones about the significance of the tie at Anfield.

“This is one of the big games of the season without a doubt,” Mata wrote on his personal blog.

The two clubs are the two most such successful sides in the history of English football and their rivalry has been fraught with controversy over the years.

Liverpool’s dominance in the 70s and 80s saw them overhaul United in terms of overall silverware but the club’s decline coupled with United’s resurgence in the 90s and the 2000s saw the Red Devils wrest the title of the most successful British club of all-time.

“There’s no need to say what it means for us and for our fans, and I hope that we can play a great game and take the three points to Manchester. We will try to extend our good run of results since the season started,” Mata, who has become a fan favourite at Old Trafford, stated.

Juan Mata, Premier League, Manchester United FC
Mata scored a memorable bicycle-volley against Liverpool in 2015! (Photo: AFP)

 

Post the Alex Ferguson era, United have lost their dominance and while Liverpool have been inconsistent in recent years, their clashes are almost always close games.

United were already missing star man Paul Pogba in midfield and suffered another injury blow when Marouane Fellaini damaged his Medial Collateral Ligament (MCL) while on international duty for Belgium.

 

And Mata was quick to wish the gangly midfielder a speedy recovery as he added, “I also hope that none of my team-mates has physical problems in the second game with the national teams as it was the case with Fellaini, to whom I wish a speedy recovery.”