Anfield Welcomes Stoke
|Gerrard signed a new deal this week...|
Liverpool still have Lucas Leiva out on long term injury and to make things worse in midfield, Jay Spearing sits this one out with a hamstring problem. Jose Enrique is expected to take back his starting position in the defence after starting from the bench in the League Cup.
For Stoke, there are doubts hanging over Marc Wilson, Jonathan Woodgate and Ryan Shotton. But manager Tony Pulis can still field a consistent side if these players aren't fit enough.
Liverpool have already clashed with Stoke twice this season both times at the Britannia. Liverpool were victorious in their League Cup tie after a Suarez brace but Stoke got the better of Liverpool in the Premier League.
The last time Stoke won at Anfield was in 1959. Usually when i pull out these sort of stats they don't go back that far but Liverpool appear to have had some good fortune over the years against The Potters.
- Liverpool are unbeaten at home in the Premier League this season.
- Stoke have won 3 of their last 4 away games in the League.
- The Reds have lost only twice in their last 15 League games.
I personally think this should be a win for Liverpool, perhaps not a comfortable one however. Stoke are on a fantastic run but Liverpool's recent performances combined with their home form should mean they have the upper hand.
There is a big "but" though, because Liverpool haven't necessarily been prolific in front of goal. If the Reds fail to score early on there is always a sense of tension and soon play begins to falter.
Maxi Rodriguez was nowhere to be seen for the tie against Manchester City but his name could be heard, sung by the travelling Liverpool fans, i wonder whether Dalglish will start the Argentinian on Saturday?
Here's hoping we can collect all three points and pile some more pressure on the teams clustered in and around 4th place.