Joey Barton: Manchester City can break unwanted record against Liverpool

Virgil van Dijk in action for Liverpool

GETTYVirgil van Dijk joined Liverpool in a deal worth £75million

The trophy pickings at the Emirates have been slim and their progress debatable but that unbeaten run is a record that is unblemished by Arsenal's current woes.

"Hopefully we can do better than last season". Thirty-eight games with no loss - invincible (so far).

But the Egypt global is back in training and set to be available when Pep Guardiola's runaway leaders arrive at Anfield this weekend.

"I don't believe in these kind of things but in 45 years Manchester City won twice there", Guardiola told a pre-match news conference.

Former Newcastle United striker Michael Quinn saw little in Arsenal's "boring" style en route to the title, instead preferring the type of football exhibited by Manchester United and his Newcastle side of the 1990s. The way they are going in the league, where they just keep on winning, they can afford to go for the domestic cup competitions too.

At their most blisteringly brilliant, they can trouble anyone. There is a long, long way to go.

"Of course, I answer all your questions, sometimes I don't know the answers and sometimes I don't answer for my players".

An official F.A. statement read: "The F.A. can confirm that referee Bobby Madley was made aware of an allegation during the Liverpool versus Everton game at Anfield last night".

The first, and most obvious, is the fixture list. Either way, this is a Liverpool side who are capable of scoring goals in quick succession and it can be the difference between another game without defeat for City and losing for the first time in the Premier League since April 5.

None of the great Liverpool teams of the seventies or eighties managed it.

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Before all of that is Arsenal at the Emirates at the end of February.

The common denominators among the better efforts involve counter-attacking, congesting the midfield with defensive-minded, tactically disciplined players and focusing on set-pieces that, in the span of eight days, brought Huddersfield and West Ham goals and nearly produced another for Southampton. Firmino, a dark skinned Brazilian, confronted Holgate who is of Jamaican descent and is claimed to have racially abused the Everton player with referee Bobby Madley and other players within earshot. We shouldn't be pretending this is the Bundesliga. If they are likely to be beaten anywhere, it may be at Anfield.

City continue to lead the way in England's top-flight, with a gap of 14 points between themselves and Manchester United.

Is Alexis Sanchez on his way to Manchester City? United inflicted no damage. They now sit an incredible 15 points clear. 'Two or three weeks, the Champions League game against Basle, he could be fit and ready'.

"He had broken into their first team three or four years before I got into City's team and was always a good example for me. We will take care of his minutes as much as possible because he is a key player for us". It remains to be seen whether Liverpool are in the market for a like-for-like replacement who was bought for £8.5m and sold for over £140m, but Jurgen Klopp will have to use what he now has at his disposal to try to get the better of all-conquering Manchester City this weekend.

It will be fascinating to see just how Guardiola handles the rotation should this situation come to fruition. The Gunners will try to pick up a road win going off as -145 road favorites Sunday at Bournemouth (+355 to win, +500 to draw).

Barton however thinks the win City crave will still prove elusive. Often forgotten amid the guile of Robert Pirès and the genius of Dennis Bergkamp is the solidity that the Invincibles were built on. So, he ensured his side proved they weren't. Overwhelming them with rampaging numbers. That's especially the case when they go behind, and so goes any pride. It's scintillating to watch but also lends itself to vulnerability on occasion.

Liverpool will start life without Philippe Coutinho after he joined Barcelona officially on Monday. And they have shored up their suspect defence by paying an eye-watering £75 million ($102 million, 84 million euros) to Southampton for defender Virgil Van Dijk.

Ultimately, this talk of invincibles and records matters nought when the two teams take to the pitch.

Ederson was rested in goal for the match, with Fabian Delph and Kevin De Bruyne also given the game off.

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