Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool will be looking to build on their away win at Tottenham when they host Southampton at Anfield on Saturday at 16:00 GMT. Marooned in a relegation scrap, the Saints will be looking for a way out of the drop zone as they seek to get their first win in three attempts in the league.
Liverpool’s Form Turnabout?
Jurgen Klopp will be the first to admit that his charges have not been performing at the levels expected of them. However, the German tactician will insist that any such judgment be reserved for the end of the season. This shows that he is hopeful of turning Liverpool’s form around for the rest of the season and climbing the table.
The 1-2 win at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium was morale-boosting. Their first-half performance was brilliant. Although the second half was more of a scarp, the Reds had the character and mental steeliness to hold on to the result.
Klopp will expect his side to take advantage of that result and make it two wins in a row in the league, as they seek to go into the World Cup break on an upward trajectory.
Southampton’s Relegation Scrap
Southampton will show up at Anfield without Ralph Hasenhuttl, who was fired ahead of this clash, as results turned from bad to worse, and the Saints are increasingly looking like relegation candidates.
Southampton are on a run of five matches where they have taken just five points. They currently sit 18th on the table, just 2 points off bottom-placed Nottingham Forest. The powers that be at St. Mary’s Stadium thought that a managerial change right now could be crucial in bolstering their side’s survival prospects this season.
This backdrop is hardly ideal for Southampton when facing a resurgent Liverpool at Anfield. The individual(s) in charge of the Saints on Saturday will have the unenviable task of masterminding a performance against Liverpool.
Jurgen Klopp cannot call on Arthur Melo, with the central midfielder out due to surgery, and is expected to be back on January 8th, 2023 earliest. Liverpool will also be without Luis Diaz (knee), Diogo Jota (calf), and Naby Keita (muscle). Keita is closing in on a return; however, the clash with Southampton might come too soon.
The Saints will be without right-back Tino Livramento. The 19-year-old is sidelined with a cruciate ligament rupture since April 25th. However, the rest of the squad are available for selection in the clash against Liverpool on Saturday.
Alisson; A. Robertson, V. van Dijk, I. Konate, T. Alexander-Arnold; Fabinho, T. Alcantara, H. Elliott; D. Nunez, R. Firmino, M. Salah
G. Bazunu; J. Larios, A. Bella-Kotchap, M. Salisu, R. Perraud; J. Ward-Prowse, A. Maitland-Niles; S. Armstrong, C. Adams, M. Elyounoussi; T. Walcott
Jurgen Klopp will focus strongly on his side’s performance to see the signs of his side returning to their high-pressing and high-intensity self. He will expect his charges to be switched on throughout the match, cut off any mistakes, and be thoroughly professional in this clash.
Expect Liverpool to dominate the ball, control the tempo of the match, and force Southampton into their half for large swathes of the clash.
Southampton will primarily be reactive in this match. They will defend their box in numbers. They will venture forward through counter-attack opportunities. They will also seek to leverage set pieces to pose an attacking threat to Liverpool.
Liverpool will have the advantage to dominate this match. They will also have what they need to win this clash and take all three points on offer.
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