De Gea starts for Man United but Rooney misses out

Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers looks ahead to Saturday’s clash at Old Trafford which he sees as the biggest in English football. ESPN FC’s Alison Bender is in Manchester for the derby between Manchester United and Liverpool. Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers says his side’s 3-0 defeat at Manchester United last season was a positive, but will be looking for victory when they visit Old Trafford.

David De Gea returned to the Manchester United side against Liverpool but striker Wayne Rooney was absent withMarouane Fellaini named up front in his place.

The injury left manager Louis van Gaal short of striking options withJavier Hernandez sold to Bayer Leverkusen, while Van Gaal opted against giving an immediate debut to36 million deadline-day signingAnthony Martial.

Dejan Lovren also kept his place, while Jordan Henderson and Adam Lallana were ruled out through injury.

. Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers confirms that striker Daniel Sturridge is back in training and fitter than he has seen him in 18 months. The ESPN FC panel discuss the importance of a stable dressing room as a trend in successful clubs. Martial, 19, has just 52 Ligue 1 appearances to his name for Lyon and Monaco and the France international starts on the bench.

De Gea signed a new contract with United on Friday, after his proposed move to Real Madrid fell through, having been left out of Louis van Gaal’s side in the opening six matches.

Danny Ings was as named in the Liverpool starting XI in place of the suspended Philippe Coutinho.

That led to reports that the England captain, who played inEngland’s 2-0 win over Switzerlandon Tuesday andscored a record-breaking 50th goal for his country, had picked up a hamstring injury and United fans’ fears were confirmed when the teamsheets were handed in at Old Trafford.

Rooney — who has yet to score a Premier League goal this season — did not train on Friday and was not present when the squad gathered at the team hotel for the usual overnight prematch stay.

Midfielder Michael Carrick was selected after he overcame a calf injury he suffered on international duty but centre-back Phil Jones (thrombosis) and forward Andreas Pereira (unspecified) are out.

The Exploding Heads look ahead to the critical Premier League clash between Manchester United and Liverpool. The ESPN FC crew discuss which team needs to prove themselves more when they square off

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