Liverpool will travel to the Etihad on Thursday (8pm) as first play second in the Premier League.
Liverpool hold a seven point advantage over their title rivals and would extend the gap to ten with a win in Manchester.
The crucial tie will be refereed by experienced official Anthony Taylor, leaving some fans furious.
Taylor hails from Wythenshawe, Greater Manchester, roughly seven miles from the Etihad.
Though he was born in the city, Taylor doesn’t support either Pep Guardiola’s side or Manchester United.
Instead, the referee is a fan of non-league Altrincham with the Professional Game Match Officials Limited (PGMOL) knowing Taylor doesn’t support a Premier League side.
Regardless, some Reds fans are not impressed with the appointment.
One posted on social media: “Anthony Taylor from Manchester will ref Man City v LFC. No words.”
While another added: “How often has Manc Anthony Taylor refereed one of our games against one of the Manchester clubs?
“It was twice out of 4 league games last season, 1 the season before, twice the season before that. How?”
And a third posted: “Manchester born Anthony Taylor will referee Liverpool’s game at Manchester City’s Etihad stadium.
“The Premier League are also considering naming Ricky Hatton & Noel Gallagher as linesman, with the ghost of Bernard Manning as 4th Official.”
Liverpool have never lost against a Manchester club when Taylor has refereed the match, though they haven’t won either.
A 2-2 draw with Manchester City and a goalless draw with United would suggest there is no evidence for Liverpool fans to worry about.
With so much hinging on the game, City boss Guardiola knows his side can’t afford to lose.
“We knew that with the position of Liverpool, if we drop points then it is over, it is finished,” Guardiola said.
“It would be almost impossible. Of course they are going to drop points but not too many.”