Liverpool can steal a march on Manchester City at the top of the Premier League table this weekend as they host Cardiff City at Anfield.
With Pep Guardiola’s men not in action until Monday, and facing a testing trip to Tottenham, the Reds can open up a three-point advantage with a victory over Neil Warnock’s struggling Bluebirds.
Jurgen Klopp’s men looked back to something like their best in midweek, swatting aside Red Star Belgrade 4-0 in the Champions League, and they will be looking to make it 10 Premier League games unbeaten at the start of what promises to be a thrilling campaign.
Here, GBP Sports takes a look at everything you need to know ahead of Saturday’s game…
Liverpool are without captain Jordan Henderson, who suffered a hamstring injury at Huddersfield last weekend.
Naby Keita is another doubt, also with a hamstring issue, while the Reds are without long-term absentee Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain.
Otherwise, it looks like a clean bill of health for Klopp, who made four changes to his line-up for the game with Red Star.
Liverpool do not have any suspended players for this game.
Likely Liverpool Starting Line-Up
It is easy to make the case for a ‘same again’ approach from Klopp.
Liverpool changed their system slightly for Wednesday’s game with Red Star, going with a ‘double 6’ in Gini Wijnaldum and Fabinho, and Roberto Firmino operating behind Mohamed Salah in a 4-2-3-1 formation.
It worked, though against modest opposition.
The performance of Fabinho, and that of Xherdan Shaqiri from the right, makes a compelling case for the two to be included again, while Joe Gomez’s imperious form at centre-back alongside Virgil van Dijk is hard to ignore.
Cardiff City Team News
Cardiff are without suspended midfielder Joe Ralls, who is serving a three-game ban after his red card at Tottenham.
The Welshmen also have injury concers, with Lee Peltier (shoulder) and Nathaniel Mendez-Laing (knee) ruled out and Danny Ward, Aron Gunnarsson and Gary Madine all doubtful.
Having beaten Fulham last time out, Warnock will hope his side have picked up some momentum after their difficult start to the campaign.
TV Channel & Kick-Off Time
The fixture will not be broadcast live on UK TV this weekend, as it kicks off at 3pm BST. In the United States the game can be watched live on television on NBC Sports, kick off 10am ET.
Best Opta Match Facts
- Liverpool and Cardiff haven’t met since the 2013-14 season in the Premier League – the Reds won both games, winning 3-1 at Anfield and 6-3 away from home.
- Cardiff’s last league win over Liverpool was in December 1959 in the second tier, a 4-0 victory at Anfield in Bill Shankly’s third league match in charge of Liverpool.
- There have been at least three goals scored in each of the last 10 meetings between Liverpool and Cardiff in all competitions, with 45 goals scored in total.
- Liverpool have lost one of their last 45 home Premier League matches against newly promoted teams (W35 D9), with that defeat against Blackpool in 2010-11 – they’ve won all seven under Jurgen Klopp at Anfield by an aggregate score of 21-2.
- Cardiff have lost 14 of their last 15 Premier League matches against ‘big six’ opposition (D1), conceding two or more goals in 12 of those games.
- Cardiff scored as many goals in their 4-2 victory against Fulham as they did in their previous eight Premier League games this season (4).
- Liverpool have lost just one of their last 49 home Premier League games against ‘City’ sides (W30 D18), with that sole defeat coming against Welsh side Swansea City in January 2017.
- Liverpool’s Mo Salah has been involved in six goals in his last five Premier League appearances against newly promoted opposition (3 goals, 3 assists).
- Cardiff manager Neil Warnock has managed four away games against Liverpool in his managerial career, losing all four without seeing his sides score a goal – he has lost to a different manager on each occasion (Souness, Houllier, Benitez and Dalglish).
- Liverpool’s Alisson is looking to become the second Liverpool goalkeeper in Premier League history to keep seven clean sheets in his first 10 starts for the club after Jose Reina (7). Alisson has recorded six clean sheets in his opening nine Premier League starts so far.