Henderson: "Manchester United are a different beast now"

Jordan Henderson knows Liverpool will be facing a different Manchester United side to the one they beat in December at Old Trafford later this afternoon.

Henderson: Man United a different beast

Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson is wary of a much-improved Manchester United as the Reds look to return to the top of the Premier League table. United were outclassed 3-1 by Liverpool at Anfield in December – a result that sealed José Mourinho's sacking and led to the appointment of caretaker manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer

Excellent form

Solskjaer's United have not lost in the Premier League since that trip to Merseyside, winning eight of the next nine matches ahead of Sunday's showdown. And Henderson knows Liverpool – who can move three points clear of Manchester City at the summit – will be facing a different beast at Old Trafford.

"It is a different United, definitely," said Henderson. "They are in a better moment now. They are in much better form, everyone can see that. Their performance against Chelsea in the FA Cup was very, very good. Their counter-attack was very good and defensively they were solid.  They are a good team with top, top players. So it will be another tough test for us going to Old Trafford. We will need to be at the top of our game to get anything out of it, but we are in a good place as well and just need to give everything. Every game is the biggest game for us now. They are all massive. It would be a massive three points for us."

United up to fourth in the table

Liverpool and City are level on 65 points, though Henderson's side have a game in hand with Pep Guardiola's reigning champions set to face Chelsea in the EFL Carabao Cup final on Sunday. In-form United, meanwhile, are fourth and 14 points off the pace in the Premier League.