Can the Reds do it on a cold Wednesday in Stoke? – Stoke City vs. Liverpool Preview

28 November 2017


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Liverpool head to the Britannia Stadium to face Stoke City on Wednesday night, as the Reds’ busy schedule continues at the end of November.


Stoke City vs. Liverpool

Wednesday, November 29, 2017 — 8pm (GMT)
Britannia Stadium
Premier League
Referee: Martin Atkinson

There’s some needless doom and gloom around at the moment, but when you weigh everything up, Liverpool are in fairly good shape.

Admittedly, failing to see out back-to-back leads against Sevilla and Chelsea was deeply frustrating, but Jurgen Klopp‘s side came up against two strong opponents.

It would be wrong to suggest that everything is going smoothly, but just one defeat in 12 matches is proof that there is plenty to feel positive about.

Dropped points on Wednesday would be a huge disappointment, however, as Liverpool come up against a Stoke side struggling to get going this season.

The Potters are 15th in the table and without a win in six, and Mark Hughes is finding himself under increasing pressure as each game passes.

Despite this, trips to the Britannia Stadium are never particularly straightforward, enjoyable affairs—the ugly 2-1 win there in April sums up what a visit to Stoke entails—and the Reds will have to play well to win.

Klopp will once again make changes to his personnel, as he looks to avoid the burnout that occurred in the post-Christmas period last season, but the visitors should have enough quality regardless of who takes to the field.

A cold Wednesday in November is never the ideal time to go to Stoke, but they’re not the force they once were.

Last Meeting: Stoke City 1-2 Liverpool

 

Team News

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Tuesday, August 22, 2017: Liverpool's Emre Can during a training session at Melwood Training Ground ahead of the UEFA Champions League Play-Off 2nd Leg match against TSG 1899 Hoffenheim. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Alterations to the starting XI that drew with Chelsea are to be expected, with Mohamed Salah and Philippe Coutinho potentially two who could be left on the bench.

Both Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino are almost certain to return to the team, having been rested on Saturday, while Adam Lallana may play a more prominent role.

Emre Can will be available after recovery from injury, and the below-par form of Jordan Henderson and Gini Wijnaldum should see the German come in for one of those.

Dejan Lovren will likely miss out, with Joel Matip and Ragnar Klavan continuing at centre-back, and Trent Alexander-Arnold will hope for a start at right-back.

Jack Butland is out for Stoke with a broken finger, and Geoff Cameron and Stephen Ireland are also unavailable.

 

Last 5 at Stoke (All Competitions)

STOKE-ON-TRENT, ENGLAND - Saturday, April 8, 2017: Liverpool's Roberto Firmino celebrates scoring the second goal against Stoke City during the FA Premier League match at the Bet365 Stadium. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Stoke 1-2 Liverpool – April 8, 2017 (Walters; Coutinho, Firmino)
Stoke 0-1 Liverpool – January 5, 2016 (Ibe)
Stoke 0-1 Liverpool – August 9, 2015 (Coutinho)
Stoke 6-1 Liverpool – May 24, 2015 (Diouf x2, Walters, Adam, N’Zonzi, Crouch; Gerrard)
Stoke 3-5 Liverpool – January 12, 2014 (Crouch, Adam, Walters; Shawcross OG, Suarez x2, Gerrard pen, Sturridge)

 

Britannia Stadium

STOKE-ON-TRENT, ENGLAND - Tuesday, January 5, 2016: A general view of Stoke City's Britannia Stadium before the Football League Cup Semi-Final 1st Leg match against Liverpool. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Capacity: 27,902

Away fans’ pubs: “It’s a fair walk to the ground from most of the pubs in Stoke-on-Trent itself, but the Glebe pub near the station is one of my favourites,” says Stoke fan David Cowlishaw.

“I tend to drink in Stone (a short train away) after a Stoke game, but there’s the Power League near the stadium and Hem Heath at the bottom of Stanley Matthews Way.”

 

Form

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Saturday, November 25, 2017:Liverpoolís Mohamed Salah scores the opening goal against Chelsea during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool and Chelsea at Anfield. (Pic by Lindsey Parnaby/Propaganda)

Stoke – Last five results (all competitions)

Lost 2-1 vs. Crystal Palace
Drew 2-2 vs. Brighton
Drew 2-2 vs. Leicester
Won 1-0 vs. Watford
Lost 2-1 vs. Bournemouth

Liverpool – Last five results (all competitions)

Drew 1-1 vs. Chelsea
Drew 3-3 vs, Sevilla
Won 3-0 vs. Southampton
Won 4-1 vs. West Ham
Won 3-0 vs. Maribor

 

Did You Know?

STOKE-ON-TRENT, ENGLAND - Sunday, January 12, 2014: Liverpool's Luis Suarez celebrates scoring the fourth goal against from the penalty spot during the Premiership match at the Britannia Stadium. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Despite the Britannia Stadium being seen as a bogey ground for Liverpool, they have actually won on four of their last five visits there.

The one failed attempt in that stretch was the infamous 6-1 defeat on the final day of the 2014/15 season—a day that Brendan Rodgers arguably never recovered from as Reds boss.

 

Klopp’s View

In his pre-match press conference, Klopp spoke about squad rotation ahead of a busy schedule, saying he doesn’t ‘rest’ players:

“It made sense at this part of the season to use the strength of the squad. It’s not completely unlikely they will start,” Klopp said.

“We don’t ‘rest’. We use our players. [Rotation] was not the reason for the last game, it was more that we needed fresh legs. I thought it worked quite well.

“It was a very important sign for the squad, that I show faith in pretty much all the boys in the squad, and they showed they are 100 percent ready.

“We will make one or two changes for the next game.”

 

TV & Live Blog Info

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Sunday, March 8, 2015: A television camera blocks the view of the goal during the FA Cup 6th Round Quarter-Final match between Liverpool and Blackburn Rovers at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

The match is not part of BT Sport’s midweek Premier League coverage, so follow our matchday live blog to get minute-by-minute updates during the game.

Henry Jackson will be in the chair from 7.15pm (GMT) bringing you plenty of pre-match content, prior to kickoff at 8pm.

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