Rematch at Stamford Bridge
After the minor disappointment of going out of the Carabao Cup the Reds will be seeking revenge against Chelsea in the league.
Both teams will be fielding close to their strongest XI’s on the day, so there can be no excuses for failing to turn up.
This is Liverpool’s greatest test in the league so far, aside from the win away at Tottenham, as Chelsea are only two points behind us on the table, level with Manchester City.
Chelsea – Team News and Predicted Lineup
Chelsea will welcome back a host of their key players as well as a couple of players returning from injury.
Antonio Rudiger and Pedro need to be assessed closer to kick-off before a decision is made over their fitness, but at this stage ti appears that Rudiger will play will Pedro might be restricted to a role from the bench.
The only other considerations are that Andreas Christensen will likely miss the game through illness, while either Olivier Giroud or Alvaro Morata could start the game up top.
Liverpool – Team News and Predicted Lineup
Liverpool will field a vastly different starting lineup to the one that lost at home to the Blues in the cup.
It was revealed that Virgil van Dijk had missed training this week as he nurses bruised ribs, and Klopp confirmed he was a doubt. However, van Dijk posted a message on Instagram which suggested that he will be ready.
In the event that he isn’t, either Dejan Lovren, or more likely, Joel Matip will take his place. Klopp also has a decision to make over his midfield three as James Milner looks fatigued, while Jordan Henderson failed to impress midweek.
The key aspect in this game will be how well Liverpool’s defence are able to deal with the dangerous Eden Hazard.
If the Belgian is allowed the freedom and space he was afforded after he came on in the cup game, then he has the quality to make us pay. However, if we can lock him down, cut off is supply, and force Cheslea to go down the opposite wing, then we should be able to score goals of our own and win.
Chelsea’s defence are no pushovers though, but with Jorginho shielding the defence it’s unlikely he will be able to give the centre-backs the protection they’ll require, so Liverpool could produce most of their chances through the middle.
If Liverpool’s defence can perform to the levels which they have been is previous league games, then we should be able to contain Hazard most of the time.
Likewise, if the midfield reaches their previous heights, then Chelsea could easily become overrun, providing ample opportunities for our front men to score.
I think that it will be a tight and toughly contested game, but one that ends in a well-earned 2-1 victory for Liverpool.
You’ll Never Walk Alone
Red Or Dead Liverpool FC Football Blog – 29/09/2018