Reds seek to go 10 points clear of 5th place – Crystal Palace vs. Liverpool Preview

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Liverpool face Crystal Palace in the Premier League on Saturday lunchtime, with three points vital in their quest for a top-four finish.

Crystal Palace vs. Liverpool

Saturday, March 31, 2018 — 12:30pm (BST)
Selhurst Park
Premier League
Referee: Neil Swarbrick

It has felt like a long two weeks since the Reds humbled Watford 5-0 at Anfield, with the international break frustratingly getting in the way of domestic matters.

Premier League action returns with for Jurgen Klopp‘s side this weekend, as they face a tricky trip to Selhurst Park.

The match sees Liverpool reunited with Roy Hodgson, and the former Reds manager will be out to prove a point with his relegation-threatened team.

With a lack of time on the training ground making preparation far from ideal, this could be a gritty encounter in south London, but one the Reds are, of course, still favourites to win.

Wednesday’s huge Champions League quarter-final first-leg clash with Man City is fast approaching, but focussing solely on this match is imperative.

A win for Liverpool would take them 10 points clear of Chelsea ahead of the Blues’ meeting with Tottenham on Sunday, outlining how big three points would be.

If Mohamed Salah carries on his incredible form, and the supporting cast also show up, there is no reason why this cannot be another impressive win for the Reds – a fifth victory in their last six league games.

Last Meeting: Liverpool 1-0 Crystal Palace

 

Team News

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Wednesday, December 13, 2017: Liverpool's Joe Gomez during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool and West Bromwich Albion at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Liverpool don’t have many fitness concerns, although Joe Gomez is out for a month, after picking up an ankle injury for England last Friday.

Emre Can is also out with a back issue, but Klopp confirmed his compatriot will be back in training on Sunday ahead of the City game.

Nathaniel Clyne is back in the squad, and could possibly even start for the first time this season in Gomez’s absence.

Klopp must decide whether to go with Dejan Lovren or Joel Matip alongside Virgil van Dijk, while Jordan Henderson, Gini Wijnaldum, James Milner, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Adam Lallana are all in contention to start.

Salah, Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino are likely to begin proceedings, but Danny Ings is a lively option, should Kloppp feel the need to rest one.

Hodgson will have to make do without Julian Speroni, Joel Ward, Scott Dann, Jeffrey Schlupp, Jason Puncheon, Bakary Sako and Connor Wickham.

Key man Wilfried Zaha should be fit.

 

Last 5 away to Crystal Palace (All Competitions)

LONDON, ENGLAND - Saturday, October 29, 2016: Liverpool's Dejan Lovren celebrates scoring the second goal against Crystal Palace with team-mate Adam Lallana during the FA Premier League match at Selhurst Park. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Crystal Palace 2-4 Liverpool – October 29, 2016 (McArthur x2; Can, Lovren, Matip, Firmino)
Crystal Palace 1-2 Liverpool – March 6, 2016 (Ledley; Firmino, Benteke pen)
Crystal Palace 1-2 Liverpool – February 14, 2015 (Campbell; Sturridge, Lallana)
Crystal Palace 3-1 Liverpool – November 23, 2014 (Gayle, Ledley, Jedinak; Lambert)
Crystal Palace 3-3 Liverpool – May 5, 2014 (Delaney, Gayle x2; Allen, Delaney OG, Suarez)

 

Selhurst Park

LONDON, ENGLAND - Saturday, October 29, 2016: A general view of Crystal Palace's Selhurst Park ground before the FA Premier League match against Liverpool. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Capacity: 25,456

Away fans’ pubs: “The best option for away fans to have a drink without being harassed is to show your ticket at the door in Thornton Heath,” Palace fan Rory Brelsford-Stewart told us.

“There is also either the Wetherspoons directly opposite the station or the Prince George on the way to the ground, which away fans frequently use.

“If you go to Selhurst or Norwood Junction you’ll struggle to find a pub that allows away fans in these days.”

 

Did You Know?

LONDON, ENGLAND - Sunday, March 6, 2016: Liverpool's Roberto Firmino scores the first goal against Crystal Palace during the Premier League match at Selhurst Park. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Despite Selhurst Park being seen as a bogey ground for Liverpool, they have actually won on their last three visits there in all competitions.

The Reds secured a 4-2 triumph there last season, Christian Benteke’s stoppage-time penalty earned them a 2-1 win in 2015/16, and they also prevailed by the same scoreline in the FA Cup fifth round, in 2014/15.

 

Form

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Saturday, March 17, 2018: Liverpool's Roberto Firmino celebrates scoring the third goal during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Watford FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Crystal Palace – Last five results (all competitions)

Won 2-0 vs. Huddersfield
Lost 2-1 vs. Chelsea
Lost 3-2 vs. Man United
Lost 1-0 vs. Tottenham
Lost 3-1 vs. Everton

Liverpool – Last five results (all competitions)

Won 5-0 vs. Watford
Lost 2-1 vs. Man United
Drew 0-0 vs. Porto
Won 2-0 vs. Newcastle
Won 4-1 vs. West Ham

 

Klopp’s View

Klopp says he and his players are only interested in defeating a talented Palace side, despite the City game receiving more attention:

“We will play Palace with all we have, with all intensity and concentration,” Klopp told reporters at Melwood on Friday.

“For a player or manager of Liverpool, the whole year is at least about qualifying for the Champions League.

“Both games are about qualification for the Champions League, one is for next year and one is for this year. They have the same importance, no difference for us.

“It will be difficult. I saw the 95 minutes against Man United. They are in a good shape, even though they’ve lost four of the last five matches.

“Roy [Hodgson] is doing a fantastic job there. It was the most difficult job to take with no points and no goals. It will be tough for us.”

 

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 game is live on Sky Sports Main Event from 11:30am (BST), with kick off at 12:30pm.

Our matchday live blog will be in full swing from 11:45am, with Chris Williams in charge of keeping the masses entertained and talking you through the action.

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