Relegation-threatened Southampton will host Liverpool this Sunday in what could be a pretty feisty game in the Premier League. In the last few years, Liverpool have managed to sign the better Southampton players, so expect a few boos when some of those former Saints stars play tomorrow.
In terms of the game itself, expect the hosts to put up a fight as they have a good record against Liverpool. Southampton have lost just once to Liverpool in the last five meetings between the two sides and have managed to keep four clean sheets in the last five games; an impressive feat considering Liverpool’s front three.
This time, however, things could be different. Mauricio Pellegrino’s side have conceded 38 goals already and the lack of a goalscorer has seen them muster only 28 goals in the league. New signings Guido Carrillo is expected to add a few goals once he gets acclimatised to the style of the English game, but Pellegrino needs goals from elsewhere of his side are to avoid a nervy brush with relegation.
Southampton’s win over West Brom last weekend ended a run of 12 games without a win, so they’ll be slightly more confident when they take on Liverpool.
Jürgen Klopp’s side, meanwhile, have hit a bit of a rough patch. Having dropped points in two of their last three league games, it’s clear that Klopp has missed the creativity of Philippe Coutinho. Former Saints star Sadio Mane hasn’t been in blistering form like last season, so the Reds have heavily relied on Mohamed Salah to do the scoring.
Liverpool will be without Joe Gomez as the fullback has a knee injury. Trent Alexander-Arnold is expected to start as the right-back. Former Southampton defender, Virgil van Dijk, is expected to keep his place and Adam Lallana is in contention to get a start as well. Klopp has a full fit midfield to choose from right now but he needs Lallana back in form as he’s perhaps the best in terms of providing the creativity.
Nathan Redmond could return for Southampton which means James Ward-Prowse could play in a more central role. Manolo Gabbiadini is still not 100% fit, so new signing Guido Carrillo could continue up front.
Southampton XI: McCarthy; Bertrand, Hoedt, Stephens, Soares; Romeu, Lemina, Ward-Prowse, Tadic, Redmond; Carrillo
Liverpool XI: Karius; Robertson, Lovren, van Dijk, Alexander-Arnold; Henderson, Can, Lallana; Mane, Firmino, Salah