No Coutinho For Southampton Clash

Liverpool welcome Southampton to Anfield on Saturday as the Reds look to continue their almost perfect start to the Premier League season. The 2-2 draw with Swansea on Monday night has been judged as a failure by some Liverpool fans but with Brendan's side still perched nicely at the top of the league, Liverpool still have destiny in their own hands at this early stage of the season.
Agger could be back in defence on Saturday...
Injuries for Liverpool have been troublesome this week after Philippe Coutinho had to undergo shoulder surgery, he won't be back in the squad until late October. Also still out long term are Glen Johnson, Sebastian Coates and Aly Cissokho. Daniel Agger on the other hand is expected to be available after that "freak gym accident" and of course Luis Suarez is anxiously awaiting his return which will come against Manchester United in the League Cup midweek.

Southampton on the other hand are in relatively good shape with just two players having doubts hanging over them; Luke Shaw and Danny Fox.

The last time the two sides met was in March this year. The injured Coutinho was on the score sheet that day but Liverpool fans will remember the game for the embarrassing defeat. Southampton found the back of the net on three occasions and the Reds were very disappointing to watch that day.

The last meeting at Anfield was in December last year, this time Liverpool took all three points with a single goal from Daniel Agger. Historically Liverpool have done pretty well at home against Southampton however the Saints notched up a win at Anfield in 2003.

The Reds recent form reads three wins and a draw in the league whilst the 11th placed Southampton have recorded an inconsistent WDLD. Southampton have also failed to score more than once in a league game so far this season. The Reds however have only scored more than once on one occasion in the league themselves. Despite Southampton sometimes offering some danger particularly via Lambert, you have to feel Liverpool will take all 3 points here with relative ease, at least, they should do!

Stat Sandwich

  • If Liverpool win it will be their 400th win in the Premier League.
  • Southampton have won only 1 of their last 10 Premier League games.
  • All of Liverpool's goals in the league so far this season have come before half time.

Liverpool can't hide from the fact that they will miss the creativity of Coutinho on Saturday. He may not take many chances at goal but the space and movement he creates will be sorely missed most notably perhaps by Daniel Sturridge. The forward is in immense form but even a talented striker needs a plentiful supply, despite this I still would pop a quid on Daniel Sturridge to find the back of the net once again on Saturday, I don't see his run ending any time soon.

For Southampton I think their best chance of taking something from Anfield is probably to try and find an early goal and then shut up shop. Watching the Reds so far this season one thing the opposition must have noticed is not only Liverpool's improvement with the ball but the fact that the Reds have become a lot better without possession. Taking the Manchester United game as an example, Liverpool made it extremely difficult for United to pass the ball, there was pressure from all angles and this was very positive to see.

My prediction for Saturday's game is going to be a 2-0 Liverpool win. Let me know your score predictions by tweeting @_TheLiverBird!


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