Reds face tricky test on the road – Wolves vs. Liverpool Preview

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Liverpool make the trip to face Wolves on Thursday evening aiming to keep up their record-setting pace atop of the Premier League table.

Wolves vs. Liverpool

Sunday, January 23, 2020 – 8pm (GMT)
Molineux
Premier League
Referee: Michael Oliver


The Reds’ 21st win of the campaign was secured with a 2-0 victory over Man United, where the scoreline failed to reflect Liverpool’s superiority.

Virgil van Dijk and Mohamed Salah were both on target to steer Jurgen Klopp’s side to another memorable victory, opening up a 16 point lead atop of the table.

While Man City’s win over Sheffield United on Tuesday closed the gap to 13, they have played two more games than Liverpool and now the 22nd win of the season is on the agenda.

It will be a tricky outing, however, with Wolves awaiting at Molineux off the back of their 3-2 comeback win at Southampton last time out.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Sunday, January 19, 2020: Liverpool's Mohamed Salah celebrates scoring the second goal with team-mate goalkeeper Alisson Becker during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Manchester United FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

The Reds will enter the clash off the back of a four day break, an encounter which is the second game in a run of five within 13 days.

Confidence is surging for Liverpool both on and off the field and while the hosts have won only one game in five across all competitions since their 1-0 defeat at Anfield, they will pose a real threat to Klopp’s men on Thursday evening.

Another win here, against the strongest level of opposition they’ll face within the next six games, would no doubt provide yet another boost and move us one step closer to clinching the league in record time.

 

Team News

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Wednesday, December 4, 2019: Liverpool's Xherdan Shaqiri during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Everton FC, the 234th Merseyside Derby, at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Things are starting to shape up nicely on the fitness front for Liverpool, with only Naby Keita, James Milner and Xherdan Shaqiri remaining under injury clouds.

The former pair have yet to return to training after picking up their respective injuries at the turn of the new year, while Shaqiri is still absent after a minor tweak to his calf prior to United’s visit.

A place on the bench could again come the way of Curtis Jones should Liverpool’s No. 23 fail to recover in time as the youngsters’ star continues to shine.

Dejan Lovren, meanwhile, has returned to training following six weeks on the sidelines with a hamstring injury, adding further depth to the centre-back ranks after Joel Matip’s return last week.

WOLVERHAMPTON, ENGLAND - Friday, December 21, 2018: Liverpool's Dejan Lovren and Fabio Henrique Tavares 'Fabinho' during the FA Premier League match between Wolverhampton Wanderers FC and Liverpool FC at Molineux Stadium. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Fabinho, on the other hand, is “growing closer and closer” to his first starting berth since sustaining ankle ligament damage against Napoli in late November having featured for the final 10 minutes against United, but Klopp was coy on whether that will be at Wolves.

While his squad has been bolstered by the return of a number of senior faces, Klopp could look to stick to the same XI who have clinched successive victories over Tottenham and Man United.

The hosts, meanwhile, will continue to be without Ruben Vinagre due to a hamstring injury, while Diogo Jota and Willy Boly are back in the mix to feature.

 

Last 5 away to Wolves (All Competitions)

WOLVERHAMPTON, ENGLAND - Friday, December 21, 2018: Liverpool's Virgil van Dijk scores the second goal during the FA Premier League match between Wolverhampton Wanderers FC and Liverpool FC at Molineux Stadium. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Lost 2-1 – January 2019 (Jimenez, Neves; Origi)
Won 2-0 – December 2018 (Salah, Van Dijk)
Won 3-0 – January 2012 (Carroll, Bellamy, Kuyt)
Won 3-0 – January 2011 (Torres x2, Meireles)
Drew 0-0 – January 2010

 

Molineux

General view of the Molineux Stadium (Anthony Devlin/EMPICS Sport)

Capacity: 31,700

Away fans’ pubs: The Blue Brick is right next to Wolverhampton train station, with a 10-minute walk to the stadium.

But a popular move is to enjoy pre-match in Birmingham and make the move up to Wolverhampton, a journey which takes approximately 25 minutes.

 

Did You Know?

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Sunday, December 29, 2019: Wolverhampton Wanderers' captain Conor Coady complains to captain Jordan Henderson after their goal was disallowed after a VAR review during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Wolverhampton Wanderers FC at Anfield. (Pic by Richard Roberts/Propaganda)

Recent topflight history against Wolves make for very good reading as Liverpool have lost just once against Thursday’s hosts in the last 11 Premier League meetings.

The Reds have emerged victorious in the last six and have restricted Wolves to just one goal within that period.

And while the recent FA Cup meeting did not fare well for Liverpool, the Molineux has proved to be a happy hunting ground in the league as we have not left the ground with the taste of defeat since August 1981.

It is a run which could continue as both history and recent form is on our side, not to mention we have won each of our last eight evening league kick-offs.

 

Form

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Sunday, January 19, 2020: Liverpool's Mohamed Salah celebrates scoring the second goal with team-mate goalkeeper Alisson Becker during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Manchester United FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Liverpool – Last five results (all competitions)

Won 2-0 vs. Man United
Won 1-0 vs. Tottenham
Won 1-0 vs. Everton
Won 2-0 vs. Sheffield United
Won 1-0 vs. Wolves

Wolves – Last five results (all competitions)

Won 3-2 vs. Southampton
Lost 1-0 vs. Man United
Drew 1-1 vs. Newcastle
Drew 0-0 vs. Man United
Lost 2-1 vs. Watford

 

Klopp’s View

Speaking in his pre-match press conference, the boss was clear that anything less than a “50-60 percent” effort against Wolves would not secure the desired result against such a “difficult” outfit:

““Wolves are really difficult to play, they play a similar system to other teams defensively, three, five in the back but they do it differently.

“They make pitch the pitch really big and they ask for a lot of footwork, they run a lot. There are solutions for all that, but not without working a lot.

“You can’t play on a 50-60 percent basis against Wolves [otherwise] you’ll have absolutely no chance.”

 

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)

Liverpool’s trip to Wolves will be shown live on BT Sport 1and BT Sport Ultimate from 7pm (GMT), with kickoff set for 8pm.

Chris Williams will be taking you through all the action and keeping you entertained on This Is Anfield’s matchday liveblog, starting from 7.15pm.

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