First away day of the season for Klopp’s Reds – Southampton vs. Liverpool Preview

16 August 2019

Liverpool make the trip to Southampton in the Premier League on Saturday, but how much will the Reds’ UEFA Super Cup exertions have taken out of them?


Southampton vs. Liverpool

Saturday, August 17, 2019, 3pm (BST)
St Mary’s Stadium
Premier League
Referee: Andre Marriner

Jurgen Klopp‘s men won another trophy in midweek – it’s becoming a nice little habit, isn’t it?

The match against Chelsea didn’t necessarily pan out as the manager will have hoped, however, with extra-time and penalties required to beat the Blues.

It left Liverpool with just two-and-a-half days to prepare for this weekend’s clash with Southampton, which is a far from ideal scenario.

The Reds will be looking for back-to-back wins to start their Premier League campaign, but potential fatigue could make this a sticky assignment.

Saints showed last season that St Mary’s can be an awkward place to go and if Klopp’s men aren’t fully engaged they could slip up.

On paper, Liverpool are still easily the superior team, so they should be good enough to return home with six points from two matches.

It might be a bit of a slog, though.


 

Team News

ISTANBUL, TURKEY - Wednesday, August 14, 2019: Liverpool's goalkeeper Adrián San Miguel del Castillo tries to put off Chelsea's Tammy Abraham as he saves the decisive fifth penalty in the shoot-out to win the Super Cup during the UEFA Super Cup match between Liverpool FC and Chelsea FC at Besiktas Park. Liverpool won 5-4 on penalties after a 1-1 draw. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Adrian is a major doubt with an ankle injury having ludicrously been hurt by a Liverpool fan during the post-match Super Cup celebrations.

It means Andy Longeran may have to deputise, in what is in danger of becoming a genuine goalkeeping crisis at Anfield.

Naby Keita is also out for Liverpool, having picked up a muscle injury in midweek, while Nathaniel Clyne is a long-term absentee with cruciate ligament damage.

Trent Alexander-Arnold will hope to return to the starting lineup, having been left out in place of Joe Gomez on Wednesday.

It could then be a battle between Gomez and Joel Matip to see who starts next to Virgil van Dijk – on current form, Matip is arguably the better option.

ISTANBUL, TURKEY - Wednesday, August 14, 2019: Liverpool's Fabio Henrique Tavares 'Fabinho' is treated for cramp by team-mate Virgil van Dijk at the final whistle during the UEFA Super Cup match between Liverpool FC and Chelsea FC at Besiktas Park. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Fabinho got through a huge amount of running in the Super Cup – he was suffering from cramp in both legs during extra-time – so it wouldn’t be a great surprise to see him rested at St Mary’s.

Gini Wijnaldum could be used in the No.6 role in the Brazilian’s place, with Jordan Henderson and James Milner the likely choices in front of him.

Adam Lallana is raring to go and could feature, however, while Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Xherdan Shaqiri will also hope to play a big part in proceedings.

Whether or not Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino all start remains to be seen – Salah could be used from the substitutes’ bench should Klopp feel he needs a breather.

Southampton have no new injury problems and a week-long break means they are refreshed – and Ralph Hasenhuttl will no doubt demand a response from his players following last weekend’s surprise 3-0 defeat away to Burnley.

 

Last 5 Away to Southampton (All Competitions)

SOUTHAMPTON, ENGLAND - Friday, April 5, 2019: Liverpool's Mohamed Salah (C) celebrates scoring the second goal with team-mates Andy Robertson (L) and Roberto Firmino (R) during the FA Premier League match between Southampton FC and Liverpool FC at the St. Mary's Stadium. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Won 3-1 – April 2019 (Long; Keita, Salah, Henderson)
Won 2-0 – February 2018 (Firmino, Salah)
Lost 1-0 – January 2017 (Redmond)
Drew 0-0 – November 2016
Lost 3-2 – March 2016 (Mane x2, Pelle; Coutinho, Sturridge)

 

St Mary’s Stadium

SOUTHAMPTON, ENGLAND - Wednesday, December 2, 2015: A general view of Southampton's St. Mary's Stadium before the Football League Cup Quarter-Final match against Liverpool. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Capacity: 32,505

Away fans’ pubs: Yates. It’s about halfway between the station and the stadium.

One piece of advice for visiting fan: Get the train. The station is a 30-minute walk from the stadium and there are plenty of pubs on the way.

 

Did You Know?

SOUTHAMPTON, ENGLAND - Friday, April 5, 2019: Liverpool's captain Jordan Henderson celebrates scoring the third goal with team-mates during the FA Premier League match between Southampton FC and Liverpool FC at the St. Mary's Stadium. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Despite Southampton feeling like something of a bogey side for Liverpool, the Reds are unbeaten in five meetings against them, winning the last four.

Klopp’s team did the double last season, cruising to a 3-0 win at Anfield in September before a dramatic 3-1 victory at St Mary’s kept their Premier League title dream alive.

In 2017/18, Liverpool again beat Saints twice: 3-0 at home and 2-0 away, including a stunning one-two between Firmino and Salah in the latter.

The last time the south coast club took points off the Reds was in May 2017, when Milner’s missed penalty proved costly in a 0-0 draw at Anfield.

 

Klopp’s View

Speaking in his press conference on Friday, Klopp played down any concerns surrounding Liverpool’s defending so far this season:

“If you compare us to August last year, it’s not that big a difference.

“The thing is Chelsea had a lot of finishes that were offside but there were no whistles, so then you see that it was two or three yards offside and so that means it’s good defending.

“We know that we have to improve a couple of things, but those things will come together the longer we are together and get used to it again. We have to find our best path.

“Especially early in the season we have to find a way to win the games and that is all that we have to do.”

 

TV & Liveblog Info

BIRKENHEAD, ENGLAND - Wednesday, July 12, 2017: A female television camera operator during a preseason friendly match at Prenton Park. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Southampton vs. Liverpool is not live on UK television, due to it being a Saturday 3pm kick-off.

Do not fear, though, because Henry Jackson is in charge of This is Anfield’s matchday liveblog, keeping you entertained from 2.15pm and providing minute-by-minute updates.

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