It’s a top-of-the-table clash in the Premier League on Wednesday evening, as Spurs go to Anfield
The Premier League’s top two—Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur collide at Anfield on Wednesday evening—with the chance to lead an engrossing table heading into the festive period up for grabs between these two heavyweights.
After 12 matches, Spurs and Liverpool are neck and neck on 25 points, with Tottenham leading the table by virtue of having a superior goal difference (+14) to the Reds’ +9.
Both of these two have identical win-loss records, but both were on the end of underwhelming results at the weekend, with Spurs ceding a lead to draw with Crystal Palaceand Fulham holding Liverpool to a 1-1 draw at Craven Cottage.
Will these two giants cancel each other out once again—in this rematch of the 2019 Champions League final—or will either team take an advantage in this fascinating title race?
Liverpool vs Tottenham: Team News
Liverpool are facing a litany of injury problems as they head into this potential season-defining bout, with the likes of Thiago, Virgil van Dijk, Joe Gomez, Xherdan Shaqiri and James Milner all sidelined.
Jurgen Klopp will have hoped for Naby Keita to have been available for the festive period, but he’s also absent with a new muscle injury.
Their injury problems have been compounded recently by the absence of new arrival Diogo Jota—who sustained an injury in the Champions League game against FC Midtjylland—and Klopp faces an anxious wait to see whether Joel Matip will return to action after being taken off with injury against Fulham.
With van Dijk and Gomez both absent, it remains to be seen whether Klopp will trust youngsters such as Nat Phillips or Rhys Williams, or shunt midfielders Jordan Henderson or Fabinho into the backline.
For Spurs, Gareth Bale is set to be back in contention after missing the Palace game with illness, while Erik Lamela is out with injury.
Liverpool vs Tottenham: Key Stats
Spurs have a poor recent record against Liverpool, having won just one of their last 15 league games against the Reds.
Liverpool, by contrast, have won 10—including all of their last four league games against the North Londoners.
Not since 2011 have Spurs won away against Liverpool in the league, but they’ve also never before lost six consecutive matches against the Merseysiders in all competitions—a record they would break if they were defeated again on Wednesday.
However, Tottenham can take encouragement from Liverpool’s slight drop in form so far this season.
They’ve already dropped 11 points so far this season—a remarkable drop from having lost 15 throughout the entirely of their title-winning campaign—but Klopp has a strong record against Jose Mourinho when the German has home advantage.
In five attempts, the Portuguese coach has never defeated Klopp away from home, but could that record be broken this week?
Liverpool vs Tottenham: Predictions
If they have every player fit and firing, Liverpool would surely be further ahead at the top of the table and on course to retain their Premier League title…particularly considering their rivals’ failing.
However, the Merseysiders are really battling against a swathe of injury concerns, with Klopp forced to manage his resources—and a squad who appear to be leggy—as the games continue to come thick and fast.
How he organises his defence will surely be key, but without van Dijk and Gomez, can the Reds really expect to keep Harry Kane and Son Heung-min at bay?
They’ll hope to give Spurs problems going forward, although the Londoners—now underpinned by Mourinho’s traditional grit and rigour—will take confidence from taking seven points from recent fixtures against Manchester City, Chelsea and Arsenal.
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