Liverpool host West Brom in the FA Cup fourth round on Saturday evening, as they look to reach the last-16 for just the fourth time in the last nine attempts.
Liverpool vs. West Brom
Saturday, January 27, 2018 — 7:45pm (GMT)
FA Cup Fourth Round
Referee: Craig Pawson
Just when you think those Reds are on an unstoppable march, they decide to go and lose 1-0 to bottom-of-the-table Swansea City.
Monday’s defeat was a terrible one – a loss that cannot be blamed on anything, other than almost every single player experiencing an off night.
This is not a time for a meltdown, however, with the defeat Liverpool’s first since October, and they are still battling across three fronts this season.
The Premier League makes way for the FA Cup this weekend, as Jurgen Klopp‘s side welcome a struggling West Brom side to Anfield.
Neither team is expected to be at full-strength, with both Klopp and Alan Pardew having one eye on league commitments in midweek.
It is still a competition that Liverpool have to take seriously this season, though, having not won a trophy in six years.
Ending the drought would be a weight off the manager and the players’ backs, even if it is very much third in the list of priorities in 2017/18.
You would expect Liverpool to have too much for their opponents on Saturday, although the 0-0 between the two sides last months showed what the Baggies are capable of.
An immediate response is required from the Reds – expect them to deliver it.
Last Meeting: Liverpool 0-0 West Brom
As mentioned, a number of changes are expected to be made.
In goal, Klopp has confirmed Simon Mignolet will start.
Trent Alexander-Arnold will likely start at right-back, while Dejan Lovren is fit to return so could partner Virgil van Dijk and give Joel Matip a rest. Ragnar Klavan is ruled out.
Alberto Moreno‘s fitness isn’t clear, so Andy Robertson could continue at left-back.
In midfield, Jordan Henderson could return, but Adam Lallana is ruled out with another injury. James Milner will be hoping for a start.
Emre Can has played a lot of football of late, so it would be a big surprise if he was named in Klopp’s starting lineup.
The same applies to the front-three of Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and especially Roberto Firmino, so Danny Ings or Dominic Solanke could get some minutes under their belt.
Daniel Sturridge is also in contention, while Ben Woodburn could use a game after being denied a loan move this month.
West Brom‘s only absentees are James Morrison and Nacer Chadli, but Pardew will freshen his personnel, ahead of Wednesday’s trip to Man City.
Last 5 at Home to West Brom
Liverpool 0-0 West Brom – December 13, 2017
Liverpool 2-1 West Brom – October 22, 2016 (Mane, Coutinho; McAuley)
Liverpool 2-2 West Brom – December 13, 2015 (Henderson, Origi; Dawson, Olsson)
Liverpool 2-1 West Brom – October 4, 2014 (Lallana, Henderson; Berahino)
Liverpool 4-1 West Brom – October 26, 2013 (Suarez x3, Sturridge; Morrison pen)
Did You Know?
Liverpool have exited the FA Cup at this stage in each of the last two seasons.
This time last year, a terrible performance at home to Wolves saw Klopp’s men eliminated, while in 2015/16, Angelo Ogbonna’s last-minute extra-time goal for West Ham knocked the Reds out in a replay.
Liverpool – Last five results (all competitions)
Lost 1-0 vs. Swansea
Won 4-3 vs. Man City
Won 2-1 vs. Everton
Won 2-1 vs. Burnley
Won 2-1 vs. Leicester
West Brom – Last five results (all competitions)
Drew 1-1 vs. Everton
Won 2-0 vs. Brighton
Won 2-0 vs. Exeter
Lost 2-1 vs. West Ham
Drew 1-1 vs. Arsenal
There was little said about Saturday’s opponents in the pre-match press conference, with not a single question on West Brom from journalists.
Instead Klopp ruled out new signings, said Ings was in a good way, delivered news of another injury for Lallana and said Danny Ward won’t getting a game. So that was fun.
TV & Live Blog Info
The Reds’ clash with the Baggies is BT Sport 2’s game of choice, with coverage getting started at 7:30pm (GMT). Kick-off is at 7:45pm.
Henry Jackson is running our live blog from 7pm, with minute-by-minute updates during the match.