Manchester United and Liverpool played out a frustrating goalless draw at Old Trafford on Sunday.
Here, Press Association Sport looks at how the two managers, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Jurgen Klopp, matched up.
Matic ruled out, McTominay in. Today's midfield battle just got a bit more interesting— Simon Peach (@SimonPeach) February 24, 2019
Solskjaer was forced to pick midfielder Scott McTominay for the first time in the Premier League since taking charge after Nemanja Matic was injured in training, opting for the Scotland international ahead of £52million Brazilian Fred. Klopp’s selection was tactical, opting for experience after swapping youngster Trent Alexander-Arnold for midfielder James Milner at right-back and playing his most solid midfield trio of Jordan Henderson, Fabinho and Georginio Wijnaldum.
Solskjaer went with a diamond in midfield with McTominay at the base and Juan Mata, at the point, charged with leading the forward pressure. However, it left Paul Pogba somewhat isolated as Liverpool dominated possession. Liverpool lined up 4-3-3 with Henderson on the right of midfield, in front of Milner, and that plan succeeded in stemming the flow to Pogba.
Injuries meant the opening 45 minutes were all about Solskjaer trying to work out a plan to get his side through to the end of the game. He could do little about his three enforced changes but would have preferred not to have had to use another attacker in Alexis Sanchez as his final substitution with the game still locked at 0-0 with 50 minutes remaining. Klopp sent on Daniel Sturridge for the injured Roberto Firmino, changing the dynamic of the forward line. Late additions of Xherdan Shaqiri and Divock Origi did little to even threaten to change the outcome.
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