Liverpool return to the top flight as world champions in a heavyweight Boxing Day clash with Brendan Rodgers’ Leicester City.
Leicester vs. Liverpool
Thursday, December 26, 2019 – 8pm (GMT)
King Power Stadium
Referee: Michael Oliver
While Brendan Rodgers’ side has faltered in recent weeks, Liverpool are in a formidable run of form with the first team having notched seven successive victories with a defeat yet to come their way in the top flight.
The outing is the Reds’ first in a run of four games over a 10-day period, and those of the Liverpool persuasion will be hoping for a belated Christmas present to kickstart the relentless schedule with all three points.
The greatest concern in the Liverpool camp remains over Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain‘s fitness after the midfielder sustained an ankle injury in the Reds’ Club World Cup win over Flamengo.
Klopp confirmed in his pre-match press conference that the No. 15 has suffered ankle ligament damage and will be sidelined for at the least the rest of 2019, though his layoff is likely to be longer-term.
The back five which shut-out Flamengo are again likely to get the nod, as the Reds look to further distance themselves from their current closest rivals.
The hosts, meanwhile, have few injuries to consider with Rodgers able to call upon a full complement, with Harvey Barnes the only player they are waiting on to prove his fitness after he was forced from the field against Man City with an ankle injury.
Last 5 away to Leicester (All Competitions)
Won 2-1 – September 2018 (Ghezzal; Mane, Firmino)
Won 3-2 – September 2017 (Okazaki, Vardy; Salah, Coutinho, Henderson)
Lost 2-0 – September 2017 (Okazaki, Slimani)
Lost 3-1 – February 2017 (Vardy x2, Drinkwater; Coutinho)
Lost 2-0 – February 2016 (Vardy x2)
King Power Stadium
Away fans’ pubs: The Counting House, which is on the way to the ground
Did You Know?
The Reds could make more history with a win against the Foxes as three points would take their tally to 52 after just 18 games.
A collection of points which would see them equal the all-time record for the most points collected at this stage of the season in the Premier League era, joining the 2017/18 Man City side who won 17 and drew one of their opening 18 games.
The Reds’ effort from last season (48) has already been surpassed, and they can claim the record for the best-ever start to a Premier League season with another four successive victories which would take their tally to 61 – two ahead of City.
Liverpool – Last five results (all competitions)
Leicester – Last five results (all competitions)
Speaking in his pre-match press conference, the boss had praise for Leicester‘s high-quality side, noting that an ability to consistently name a similar team had been a bonus for them this season. He also pointed to his own team’s injury struggles and the fact that, so far, the Reds have found a solution.
“In midfield it’s highest quality with all the things: desire, hard players, aggressive challengers, super footballers. The wings, creative, quick…then you have Jamie Vardy on top of that and Maddison in between.
“We have only highest-quality players. It’s not the biggest group, it’s a small group and getting smaller week by week.
“But so far we could deal with it. To come through a season you need to be lucky in these moments that you can bring on a team which is able to win a game. That’s what we try to do.”
TV & Liveblog Info
Liverpool’s Boxing Day clash with Leicester will be shown live on Amazon Prime from 7.30pm (GMT), with kickoff set for 8pm.
Chris Williams will be the one on This Is Anfield’s matchday liveblog, keeping you entertained and in the know with updates on all the action, starting from 7.15pm.