manchester united v liverpool

Fletcher relishing Liverpool battle

September 16, 2010
By ESPNsoccernet staff

Darren Fletcher believes the derbies between Manchester United and Liverpool remain the biggest of the season.

Wayne Rooney, Darren Fletcher, Dirk Kuyt, Jamie Carragher
GettyImagesRecent North-West derbies have been fiery affairs

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United have dominated the English league over the last two decades, but they have regularly faced strong competition from Liverpool. The Reds slipped to seventh place last season, however, and there are doubts about whether they can challenge for the title this time around.

Yet with both clubs now level on 18 league titles, Fletcher feels the rivalry and sense of occasion are as strong as ever.

"It is the biggest game because of the history and the success the two clubs have had," he said. "We have had a lot of battles over the years.

"There is a great history between the two clubs and we have equalled their number of league titles now, so a lot is looked into that.

"It is a massive occasion, when form goes out of the window. Liverpool will be looking to kick-start their season but to have them at Old Trafford so early just emphasises the importance of getting the right result."

United were left frustrated on Tuesday when Rangers adopted defensive tactics to secure a 0-0 draw in their Champions League opener, but Fletcher feels there is no chance Liverpool will take the same approach.

"Liverpool's history will not allow them to put nine men behind the ball," he said. "That is not their style. Under Roy Hodgson I am sure they will be disciplined and well drilled, but they will look to win the match as well."