“We have to strike back!“ – Liverpool vs. Sunderland Match Preview

on 05.02.2016


Liverpool host struggling Sunderland on Saturday afternoon, as the Reds seek to return to winning ways after defeat to Leicester in midweek.

SUNDERLAND, ENGLAND - Wednesday, December 30, 2015: Sunderland's manager Sam Allardyce during the Premier League match against Liverpool at the Stadium of Light. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Liverpool vs. Sunderland
Saturday 6th February 2016, 15:00 pm (GMT)
Anfield
Premier League 
Referee: Robert Madley

Jurgen Klopp’s side begin their search to salvage some pride after recent poor results officially ended any hope of a positive 2015/16 Premier League campaign transpiring.

That the league season is effectively over with 14 games left to play is hugely disappointing, making tasting cup glory the priority for the Reds, who could finish Saturday’s game in an empty Anfield with a mass walk out planned for the 77th minute in protest at the forthcoming and outrageous ticket increases.

Though there’s little left to play for in the league, results and performances are still important to build confidence for the cup competitions, and also with the squad needing to prove they can be part of Klopp’s Anfield revolution, despite showing anything but recently.

 

 

The Mackems at Anfield

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Saturday, December 6, 2014: Liverpool and Sunderland players stand together for Football Remembers during the Premier League match at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

The Reds have enjoyed much the better of this fixture, and look to continue the dominance on Saturday by posting just their second league win of 2016.

Liverpool have lost only one of the last 12 meetings between the clubs, alongside being unbeaten at Anfield against the Mackems in 33 years, last suffering defeat in 1983.

Last season’s corresponding fixture saw a goalless bore draw played out at Anfield as the Reds added to their recent indifferent home results against the Black Cats, with a third stalemate in the last five Merseyside meetings.

SUNDERLAND, ENGLAND - Wednesday, December 30, 2015: Liverpool's Christian Benteke scores the first goal against Sunderland during the Premier League match at the Stadium of Light. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

The most recent clash just over a month ago saw Christian Benteke net a successive match winning goal to hand Klopp’s men a 1-0 win, in a battling but unconvincing performance.

Against a physical Sunderland side, Klopp will hope for a repeat this weekend.


 

Form

SUNDERLAND, ENGLAND - Wednesday, December 30, 2015: Liverpool's Jordon Ibe in action against Sunderland's DeAndre Yedlin during the Premier League match at the Stadium of Light. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Both sides come into the clash following defeats against the top two, and looking to respond positively at the first attempt.

Sunderland’s 1-0 loss to Man City on Tuesday night leaves them sat in 19th place and four points adrift of safety currently.

But after five straight defeats, Allardyce’s men have picked up a steady seven points from the last 15 available, though that is the lowest amassed by any club in the league over the last 10 games.

The Mackem’s have also conceded the most goals in the division away from home and in total, lost the joint-highest amount of games and arrive winless in their last three.

Positive form and consistency continues to evade Klopp’s Reds, who have won three, drawn two and lost five of their last 10 games.

Only the bottom three clubs and Bournemouth have won fewer home games than Liverpool, and the Reds look for a first Merseyside win since Boxing Day.

Form Guide (Last 10 league games)

Liverpool: L-D-L-W-W-L-D-L-W-L

Sunderland: L-L-L-L-L-W-W-L-D-L


 

Odds

An immediate return to winning ways for Klopp’s Liverpool is priced at 4/9 with a draw at 15/4 and a vital three points for Allardyce’s relegation battling side at a hefty 8/1.

 

Opposition

SUNDERLAND, ENGLAND - Wednesday, December 30, 2015: Liverpool's Roberto Firmino sees his shot hit the Sunderland post during the Premier League match at the Stadium of Light. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Allardyce arrives with a strong squad available for clash, with only long term absentees Adam Matthews and Sebastian Larsson missing.

Jeremain Lens is a doubt with a groin problem, but Yann M’Vila is set to recover in time from a foot injury to feature and Younes Kaboul is in contention to return after over a month out.

The Wearside boss could start the same side that narrowly lost to City in midweek which featured new signing Lamine Kone, while fellow January arrival, Whabi Khazri, is pushing for a start after coming on at half time of the loss.

Dame N’Doye and Adam Johnson, who also both entered as substitutes, will hope for a place in Allardyce’s XI, as will Fabio Borini, who is in line to make his first Anfield return since leaving the Reds permanently.

A physical battle awaits Klopp’s side, and they will have to move the ball much more quickly than in midweek with more support in the final third needed to expose the Premier League’s leakiest defence.

 

What the Managers Say

Klopp dismissed Daniel Sturridge speculation and talked injuries and striking back in his pre-match press conference:

“There’s absolutely nothing to say about it. Why should I think about that? Daniel is back in training and that’s great.”

“Divock [Origi], Phil [Coutinho] and Daniel [Sturridge] are back in training. Another three sessions and they are available for West Ham if nothing happens.”

“We have to do better because we were not satisfied with our performance against Leicester. We have to strike back.”

 

Prior to the Merseyside trip, Allardyce said:

“[Klopp] is finding his feet. I’m sure he’ll have his own ideas on how he wants to shape the team in the summer and I think he’s doing the best he possibly can to get results and get through this season.

“He’s obviously a great character which is what we all love to see at our level of football.”

TV Info

For the second game running the match won’t be broadcast live in the UK, but can be found on channels such as Fox Sports, Star Sports 4, Canal+ Sport and SuperSport 3 around the world.

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23 COMMENTS

  1. Need to see youngsters replacing 1st team flops, change it up Jurgen its what the fans want and is badly needed.

    • migs
      clyne caulker sakho smith
      Ibe brannagan stewart lallana/moreno
      fimino ojo

      why not, no chance of top 4 nothing to lose?

  2. Allardyce:”Klopp is a soft German”

    That pork belly Allardyce owes LFC fans an apology for previously calling our worldclass manager “soft German”. Hope our boys trash them tomorrow, and keep Allardyce worrying about relegation.

  3. Realist • a minute ago

    I so respect Herr Kloppo for staying professional in front of the cameras when he knows he is juggling a Rodgers squad to try to do better when he knows they cant as they don’t have the quality to do so . He backs the players publically anyway and for that he deserves our respect. lets give him unconditional support until he starts to buy and build his “Kloppo team ” in the summer …then and only then will we dominate again. Untill that happens we are the luckiest club in the world to have him …just my 2c worth

    • He stuck to his word on transfers and current players and giving them 1 season to show their worth but unfortunately lots of them are not repaying him with good displays.
      We are seriously stretched with injuries which isn’t helping either. We really need a top striker to out weigh the goals we keep shipping.

  4. Really really want to see a few youngsters get thrown in these BPL games, maybe one or two at a time. Give Brad Smith and Texiera a go with the first team for one, then let Stewart and Brannagan come in for the next one. Think this would give us a better glimpse into the true quality of these guys and also serve as a better wake up call for the underperforming lot of regular first teamers (as apposed to just rotating the full squad for cup games).

  5. Everybody thought against West Ham in the cup that it was our B team..
    but they’re actually better than what played against Leicester ?

  6. Sunderland have 2 wins in the last 10 so I thought we’d easily have them…then I realized we only have 3 wins…

  7. sunderland’s 5 match form guide is better than Liverpool. Hope Liverpool can cause a minor upset and take 3 points to ensure closeness to the magical 40 points and PL next season.

  8. Enough with the 4-6 formation, Milner, Lallana and Firmino are not a front 3, they are all support players and still play as support players regardless of where they are on the pitch. Firmino and Ojo on the wings, Benteke up front with Lallana behind.

  9. For me our huge weakness is D/M , Lucas , Hendo & Can are not playing well so start today Joe Allen for Lucas & Brannagan for Hendo . Then bring Hendo on for the final 30 mins . Tuesday all being well we should have a full squad to choose from .

    • I think we should sign Sven Bender, apart from the fact that he would be a great upgrade in the DM position, Klopp knows him very well and Dortmund should let him go for a quite low price due to Julian Weigl gaining a spot in the starting XI ahead of him. PS: Sorry for bad english

      • Your command of the English Language is good.

        We have had fans on this site advocating us signing Bender for many years.He would definitely be an upgrade on our current midfield options.

    • We’re still a bit short of a full squad, mate. Ings missing is more of a let down than we would have imagined at the start of the season.

  10. Sunderland are a terrible team. Unfortunately, particularly in this formation with no strikers and a bunch of non-goalscoring, hardworking midfielders, we are a terrible team also. With as shaky a defence as anybody.

    The balance has been far too weighted towards effort and “solidity”. Screw that. Attack!

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