For a couple of hours on Sunday Liverpool fans will throw off their usual disdain for Manchester United and be rooting for their great rivals as they take on Manchester City.
Should Liverpool beat West Ham United on Saturday they would close the gap in the Premier League title race to three points having played the same amount of games.
If United were then to beat City at The Etihad the following day, Liverpool’s title destiny would be in their own hands.
It is a big if, however, as United’s interim manager Ralf Rangnick faces his biggest test since coming in to replace sacked Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
While United are unbeaten in their last eight league games under the German, only one was against a top-six team, four have ended in draws including a 0-0 home stalemate with relegation-threatened Watford last time out, and fans are still struggling to work out a recognisable style of football.
City, while suffering a blip in a 3-2 home defeat by Tottenham Hotspur in their previous home game, have won 15 of their last 17 Premier League games and allowing United to sabotage their title hopes is unthinkable.
United did win on their last league visit to The Etihad almost a year ago, although that 2-0 triumph merely delayed City’s procession to a third title in four years.
Bruno Fernandes and Luke Shaw were on target that day and Fernandes has raised the stakes ahead of Sunday’s clash, especially with United’s hopes of finishing in the top four hanging in the balance.