Roy Hodgson’s first domestic game in charge at Liverpool pits him against one of the top four in the shape of Arsene Wenger’s Gunners – and the Reds next match is away to big spending Man City. So a tough start for Hodgson.
Liverpool are buoyed by the summer arrival of Joe Cole and Fernando Torres and Steven Gerrard’s commitment to the club. At one point this summer it looked certain at least one of their two talismen would depart Anfield for Champions League football – something the Reds can’t offer after finishing seventh last season.
If Torres starts, this will be his first appearance since the World Cup Final, which is also true of Pepe Reina and Dutch duo Dirk Kuyt and Ryan Babel as the quartet were given extra time to recover and weren’t involved in the Europa League clash with Rabotnicki last week.
Joe Cole is expected to make his League debut for the club, as could Milan Jovanovic. While it will be interesting to see if Javier Mascherano is included if his proposed move to Inter Milan hasn’t been completed by the end of the week. His replacement Christian Poulsen is expected to sign this week and could be included in the squad.
This fixture last season saw the visitors victorious, 2-1, courtesy of a Glen Johnson own goal and Andriy Arshavin’s winner, Dirk Kuyt hit the Reds goal. The season before that was the incredible 4-4 draw with Arshavin grabbing all four for the Gunners.
We’ll have more team news and previews in the week.