Consistency required as Reds visit Clarets – Burnley vs. Liverpool Preview

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Liverpool make the trip to Turf Moor to face Burnley on Saturday afternoon, as they look to build on last weekend’s memorable opening day win at Arsenal.

Burnley vs. Liverpool

Saturday, 20th August 2016, 3pm (BST)
Turf Moor
Premier League
Referee: Lee Mason

After an ideal start to the season at the Emirates last week, attention now turns to Burnley for Jurgen Klopp‘s Reds.

The newly promoted side suffered a 1-0 home loss to Swansea last Saturday, with Leroy Fer scoring the game’s only goal.

This is a huge opportunity for Klopp’s side, who have to win games of this nature if their 2016/17 campaign is to be a successful one.

Klopp spoke last week about consistency being vital, saying it is invariably the key to success this season.

“Different things have influence on consistency—the style of play, the shape, the injury situation…a lot of things,” he said prior to the Arsenal game.

“Consistency is the only way to be successful. All of these big jumps in performance, up and down, don’t help. It’s possible because we are all human beings and things can happen that should not happen too often.”

The Reds have come unstuck against sides of Burnley‘s stature so many times over the years, and Saturday would be the perfect time to show consistency can be delivered this season.

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Last meeting at Turf Moor: Burnley 0-1 Liverpool

BURNLEY, ENGLAND - Boxing Day, Friday, December 26, 2014: Liverpool's Raheem Sterling celebrates scoring the first goal against Burnley during the Premier League match at Turf Moor. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Opposition View

In This Is Anfield’s season preview for Burnley, Clarets season ticket holder Lindsey Hoyle gave her thoughts on the team’s chances of survival:

“In theory we should be stronger going up this time, our third visit to the Premier League in seven years. However, again there’s not been enough strengthening and expanding of the squad to compete with the top flight powerhouses.”

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Wednesday, March 4, 2015: Burnley's manager Sean Dyche during the Premier League match against Liverpool at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

And on Liverpool:

“I’ve got a lot of time and respect for Jurgen Klopp and although Liverpool aren’t made up of marquee signings or superstar names, Klopp has shown he can build a successful team through methodology, rather than in the transfer market.

Philippe Coutinho must be oppositions’ biggest fear, but for Liverpool’s visit to Turf Moor Danny Ings (if he plays) could be very pumped up – he knows the ground, knows the home fans, and could be a threat to Burnley on his return.”

Team News

FLEETWOOD, ENGLAND - Wednesday, July 13, 2016: Liverpool's Joel Matip in action against Fleetwood Town during a friendly match at Highbury Stadium. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Klopp has been dealt a blow with the news that Mane will miss the game with a shoulder injury, but it should only keep him out for the trip to Turf Moor.

Otherwise, Liverpool’s squad is looking increasingly healthy, with a number of key players available for the showdown with Sean Dyche’s side.

Emre Can could come back into the team, having not started against Arsenal, while Joel Matip could make his competitive debut in defence.

James Milner, Divock Origi and Daniel Sturridge are also back in contention, but Mamadou Sakho and Lucas Leiva are not quite ready for a return yet.

It is never easy to second-guess Klopp’s team selection, and there is now a real battle for places in the starting line-up.

One of Can, Lallana, Jordan Henderson and Georginio Wijnaldum will likely be on the bench, while Roberto Firmino may keep his place up front ahead of Origi and Sturridge.

Then there’s the left-back conundrum, with many of the opinion that Milner will come in for the under-fire Alberto Moreno.

All will be revealed on Saturday at 2pm.

Jon Flanagan will not be available to face his former club, due to being ineligible, while Ashley Barnes is also missing with a hamstring injury.

Form

Liverpool – last 5 results (all comps)

Won 4-3 vs. Arsenal
Lost 4-0 vs. Mainz
Won 4-0 vs. Barcelona
Lost 2-1 vs. Roma
Won 2-0 vs. AC Milan

LONDON, ENGLAND - Sunday, August 14, 2016: Liverpool's Philippe Coutinho Correia celebrates scoring the first equalising goal against Arsenal with team-mates Alberto Moreno [L] and Roberto Firmino [R] during the FA Premier League match at the Emirates Stadium. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Burnley – last 5 results (all comps)

Lost 1-0 vs. Swansea
Won 3-1 vs. Rangers
Won 2-1 vs. Bolton
Won 4-1 Bradford
Drew 1-1 vs. Morecambe

Turf Moor

A general view of Turf Moor, home of Burnley

Capacity: 21,401

Away fans pubs: The cricket club next to the away end is a good place for home/away fans to mingle. Avoid Burnley town centre, stay closer to the ground.

Have a pint of local ale from the Moorhouses brewery in the fan zone (opposite side of ground to away end), where the lunchtime game will be shown.

Klopp’s View

Pre-match Klopp spoke about Burnley‘s home record, with the game switching from Anfield due to the Main Stand expansion work:

“When the fixtures came out we knew the second matchday was Burnley, that’s difficult enough. It would’ve been difficult enough if it was here, there are no easy games to play in this league.

“That we play [at Turf Moor] is not something we really think about. I know about the home record of Burnley; until the Swansea game they were unbeaten [since January] so they are really strong and feel confident at home. That makes it not easy for us.

“But they are new in the league and if it had been for them the first away game at Anfield, that’s a nice atmosphere and something you are looking forward to when you are promoted – that would’ve been difficult too.

“That we play now in Burnley, that we then play at Tottenham, it’s nothing we can change so we don’t think about it.”

One to Watch: Steven Defour

With Burnley supporters voicing concerns over a lack of signings this summer, this week they signed Steven Defour out of nowhere.

The Belgium international is a reap coup for the Lancashire club, and they broke their transfer record in the process, paying £7million for his services.

The 28-year-old is a class act in the middle of the park, and he has enjoyed spells at Porto and Anderlecht, as well as winning 46 caps for his country.

If Liverpool’s midfielders allow him too much on the ball, letting him dictate the play, he could prove to be an influential figure.

On a potential debut for the Belgian midfielder Defour, Dyche said in his pre-match press conference:

“Possibly. It’s one of things we’ll look at accordingly and he’s certainly a player we’ve been on for a while to bring him in.”

UK TV Info

The match is not being televised in the UK, due to it being a Saturday 3pm kick-off, but the usual live streams will no doubt be available.

Highlights will be shown on Match of the Day, at 10:30pm on BBC1.

To mark the end of the 30-year wait for a league title, the ‘Liverpool Mishmash’ poster is available to order exclusively on This Is Anfield — the history of the Reds in one image!

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