Tottenham are Sunday’s visitors to Anfield as Liverpool seek three points over a rival for European football.
Liverpool vs. Tottenham
Premier League (33) | Anfield
April 30, 2023 | 4.30pm (BST)
The upcoming game at Anfield presents an opportunity for Liverpool to win a fourth straight Premier League match for only the second time this season.
In their way are a Tottenham side who have had more managers in the last five weeks than Liverpool have in the last 11 years.
Here are 10 key things to know ahead of Liverpool vs. Tottenham.
1. Good news on injuries
After missing Liverpool’s win at West Ham as a precaution, Ibrahima Konate could start after Jurgen Klopp declared he “will be back.”
The other most notable piece of team news is that Diogo Jota “got a knock on his back” last time out but “should be alright.”
Naby Keita was also mentioned, with his manager saying he would train on Friday.
Meanwhile, Roberto Firmino remains out through injury along with long-term absentees Stefan Bajcetic and Calvin Ramsay.
2. Expect changes?
Klopp is expected to stick by his mantra that a “readiness to counter-press” is the key attribute when picking his team.
With that in mind, it is likely that Curtis Jones will retain his spot in midfield and Jota will also start if fit.
Both have repaid their manager’s faith in recent weeks after spells on the sidelines.
Jordan Henderson or Fabinho could be rotated due to Liverpool playing six games in 19 days – Thiago would be the most likely man to replace either of the midfield pair.
Predicted XI: Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Konate, Van Dijk, Robertson; Fabinho, Henderson, Jones; Salah, Jota, Gakpo
3. Tottenham’s turmoil
While Tottenham showed resilience to come back from 2-0 down to draw against Man United on Thursday, the last few months have been, for the most part, a mess.
Sacking Antonio Conte didn’t improve Tottenham‘s form, and interim boss Cristian Stellini was removed from his post when Spurs suffered humiliation at St James’ Park.
The visitors, who lost 6-1 to Newcastle, were amazingly down 5-0 within 21 minutes of the match kicking off.
Now, Ryan Mason holds the reins until the end of the season and has already said he feels “ready” to take the job permanently.
4. Injuries affect the visitors
Against Man United, Mason decided to play a back three, with Clement Lenglet alongside Eric Dier and Cristian Romero in defence.
While Ivan Perisic provided width from the left, Pedro Porro had his best game in a Spurs shirt as he scored and played as a right wing-back.
With Fraser Forster stepping in for Hugo Lloris, Tottenham remain without their injured captain and goalkeeper, after he was withdrawn at half-time in the embarrassing display at Newcastle.
Adding to Spurs’ worries are the absences of Ryan Sessegnon, Yves Bissouma, Emerson Royal and Rodrigo Bentancur, who are all set to miss the Anfield clash.
5. A clean slate
After walking a tightrope for the last two games, Fabinho can finally sleep easy knowing that only a red card would see him serve a suspension in the Premier League.
The Brazilian has started the Reds’ last two matches knowing that he would serve a two-game suspension should he be booked.
Fabinho‘s nine cards have now been wiped, though, and should free the Brazilian up to make a cynical foul if needed.
It comes at a good time as Klopp has said that Tottenham “were, for years, the best counter-attacking team in Europe,” and they still possess the players that helped them achieve that.
6. Doing the double?
Liverpool have the opportunity to complete a fourth double in five years over Tottenham, after beating them 2-1 in north London back in November.
Mo Salah was at the double himself that day as Liverpool took a 2-0 lead into half-time, before Harry Kane pulled one back to make it a nervy finish.
While the defence will likely stay the same, only two other outfielders are set to start on Sunday who also started at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in November – Salah and Fabinho.
7. Liverpool have Eurovision
With Champions League qualification seemingly out of reach, Liverpool have been left to fight Tottenham, Brighton and Aston Villa for the remaining European places.
The maximum amount of points Liverpool can achieve is 71 while Brighton can reach 73 – a total Newcastle and Man United could both achieve with two games to spare.
Finishing in fifth or sixth position would be enough to qualify for the Europa League, while seventh spot would secure a first-ever appearance in the UEFA Europa Conference League.
8. Did you know?
If Salah plays it will be his 300th appearance for Liverpool – that’s the most of anyone in the squad except Henderson, James Milner and Roberto Firmino.
The Egyptian’s next goal will see him become joint-fifth on the club’s all-time league goalscorers list, joining Harry Chambers on 135.
9. Tierney takes charge
The referee for this one is Paul Tierney, whom Klopp infamously once told: “I have no problem with any referees, only you.”
Let’s hope both stay out of the headlines this week.
Tierney’s assistants are Richard West and Matthew Wilke, while David Coote is the lead VAR.
John Brooks is the fourth official.
10. Follow the match with TIA
Liverpool vs. Tottenham is live on Sky Sports Premier League, with kickoff at 4.30pm (BST).
TIA’s matchday live blog will be up and running from 3.45pm, with Henry Jackson tasked with keeping you entertained and up-to-date.
Come on you Reds!