Lallana predicts United will miss out on top four

SoccerBy Kevin Palmer
Lallana confident Liverpool will finish ahead of Man Utd
Lallana confident Liverpool will finish ahead of Man Utd

Liverpool midfielder Adam Lallana is convinced that his side will beat Manchester United to a top four finish in the Premier League this season.

Lallana was in bullish mood as he met the media ahead of a game that could be crucial in the race to qualify for next season's Champions League, with Liverpool two points behind fourth placed United heading into Sunday's game.

When asked to predict who will finish in the top four this season, Lallana stated: "Chelsea, Manchester City, us and Arsenal.

"I am confident we can finish in the top four. We just need to remain focused. The next game is obviously going to have a bearing on that, but I don't think it will necessarily prove decisive.

"There are still eight games left after Sunday, so there will still be a lot of twists and turns.

"United have got Arsenal in their second to last game of the season, Southampton are at City. Anything can still happen. The top four battle involves seven teams this year. It's great for the neutral."

Lallana suggested his side had an eye on revenge following their 3-0 defeat at Old Trafford in December, in comments that will fan the flames between the two most successful clubs in English football.

"This is payback time for the last match," added Lallana.

"There were glimpses of what we might be able to achieve in that game, chances we could have taken, but we lost 3-0 so it was disappointing for us.

"That result at United summed up where we were as a team. We had a difficult start to the season -- it's no secret we were struggling for form and confidence -- but credit to the manager and everyone else at the club for sticking together and coming out the other side a lot stronger.

"The rest of the league will be looking at us and the run of form we are in.

"We haven't lost in the league since the defeat at Old Trafford, we have taken 33 points from 39 and kept six successive cleans sheets away from home. We have turned our season around."

Read John Aldridge's explosive column on the Liverpool v United rivalry in this weekend's Sunday World newspaper.