LEICESTER CITY VS LIVERPOOL
| Saturday, September 1st |
Premier League | King Power Stadium
11:30 AM GMT / 12:30 PM BST / 7:30 AM EST
It’s been a perfect start for Liverpool. Three clean sheets and nine points from the opening three matches. And the players haven’t even put it all together yet. It’s the same exciting attacking play but the finishing and passing in tight spaces can be better. Even so, Liverpool will head to Leicester City on Saturday full of confidence that they can grab another three points and maintain their position at the top of the Premier League table.
Leicester City have won their last two matches against Southampton and Wolverhampton after losing their season opener to Manchester United. Claude Puel will be happy with his team’s points collection so far but the Frenchman will have a different game in front of him than his previous three this season.
Liverpool will be well up for attacking Leicester, confident in their ability to maintain their first-place position going into the international break. Three clean sheets shows that the Reds are also difficult to play through. And Puel will be at a disadvantage without Jamie Vardy who is still suspended following a straight red card against Wolves.
Vardy has traditionally been Leicester biggest threat against Liverpool, scoring seven of the Foxes’ nine goals against the Reds in their last five meetings.
Projected Liverpool Lineup (4-3-3)
Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Gomez, Van Dijk, Robertson; Keïta, Wijnaldum, Henderson; Salah, Firmino, Mané
It’s not exactly obvious who Klopp will pick for his starting line-up. The manager has picked the same XI for the opening matches. I said it last week and was wrong but it still feels like a match to rest James Milner and start Jordan Henderson. Fabinho’s availability remains unclear but Gini Wijnaldum and Naby Keita will be expecting to keep their spots on the team sheet. The two midfielders have started the season in good form.
Joe Gomez is also expected to keep his position next to Virgil Van Dijk in defense while Dejan Lovren and Joël Matip continue their rehab.
There’s always a chance that Klopp decides to give either Alberto Moreno or Nathaniel Clyne the nod to spell Andy Robertson or Trent Alexander-Arnold. But it’s probably safe to say that the front three will remain unchanged. And perhaps we’ll get to see Xherdan Shaqiri as a second-half sub if the game is going well for Liverpool.
I’m expecting an open game with both sides looking to catch the other on the break.
What the Managers Had to Say
Jürgen Klopp: “You can see Claude’s work is now paying off at Leicester. They have changed the style a bit. It is good football they are playing and are full of confidence especially after the last result.”
Claude Puel: “For me, a complete game is the possibility to play counter-attack, when we have to defend deep, or to play in set attack, against a strong defensive unit. We need to have a response against any opponent.”
Referee: Paul Tierney Assistants: Darren Cann, Adrian Holmes Fourth official: Andre Marriner
Kickoff is set for 11:30 AM GMT/7:30 PM EST tomorrow, and television listings for the match can be found on LiveSoccerTV.
In the meantime, and as always, we’ll be keeping you updated with all the buildup to the game, including team news as it’s released, our live matchday thread, and post-match recaps from The Liverpool Offside staff. If you want to join the discussion, sign up for an SB Nation account to have your say on the action as it happens.