Gary Pallister: Manchester United v Liverpool still the main fixture
Gary Pallister claims the ferocity of Manchester United's rivalry with Liverpool is something the Manchester derby may never match.
The rise of Manchester City in recent seasons has brought the competition United face for silverware much closer to home and added spice to their derby meetings.
But former United defender Pallister has no doubt the Liverpool fixture is still the most heated in the English game, even after a spell when both clubs have been underachieving.
United travel to Anfield for the season's first meeting of the two north-west giants on Monday.
Pallister, speaking the launch of Marathonbet's Manchester United online live casino, said: "It's always a great game to look forward to. The Liverpool game is always the one everybody in Manchester looks for when the fixtures come out and it's no different now.
"Obviously we've got some neighbours who are taking a lot of the headlines but the Liverpool game is still the one. They're the two most successful clubs in the history of the game going head to head and it has that heated rivalry of two cites.
"That's always going to be there and it'll take a while for the City game to rival it, if ever."
Liverpool go into the game as favourites after an impressive start to the season and Pallister admits he does like the look of the Merseysiders under Jurgen Klopp.
The 51-year-old said: "It's set up for a cracking night. They're one of the form teams, there's no doubt about that. Attacking-wise they look full of goals and the manager's fitted in really well, the crowd have taken them to their hearts.
"It's a tough ask to go to Anfield at any time but when they're cock-a-hoop and on a bit of a run it makes it more difficult."
Pallister expects Wayne Rooney to be itching to start after being put on the bench for both United and England in recent weeks.
Pallister said: "It's always tempting to chuck a player like Wayne Rooney into your team. I'm sure he'll be hurting from the criticism he's had and being left out of the United and national team.
"He'll be desperate to prove people wrong and regain his place. I'm sure it'll be a temptation for Jose (Mourinho) on Monday to maybe put him back in the side.
"It's one of those fixtures where you need a bit of experience sometimes. The Liverpool fans love to have a go at him and he loves to answer them by scoring goals."
Pallister himself knows the joys of scoring for United at Anfield having memorably grabbed two in a 3-1 win during the successful 1996-97 title run-in.
He said: "That's the only time I ever scored two goals in my career. To do it in front of The Kop at Anfield as a United player doesn't get much better than that.
"It was such an important fixture at the time as well because Liverpool were making a real tilt at the title that year. It was really tight so to score two and win - with a title on the line - was really special."
:: Gary Pallister was speaking the launch of Marathonbet's Manchester United online live casino.