LIVERPOOL VS SOUTHAMPTON PREVIEW
With just 13 points from 9 games, Liverpool haven’t made the best of starts to the 2015/16 Premier League. In his 2 games since taking charge of the club, Jurgen Klopp is undefeated but not victorious. It will be certainly be unfair to criticize a manager within his first couple of weeks, but fans are desperately waiting to see Liverpool grab a victory and Klopp is perhaps experiencing some pressure as well.
Implementing a balanced approach
While Liverpool played a highly defensive game against Tottenham, they tried to exert tremendous pressure on the Rubin Kazan defense, especially after the Russian club were reduced to 10-men. Yet, despite some good opportunities, the Reds simply couldn’t capitalize their opportunities. Klopp did perhaps learn from the last game that Liverpool attack is still a work-in-progress. However, the addition of Benteke and Firmino, aided by Can and Coutinho could indeed boost the team’s attacking potential compared to the last two games. Yet, Liverpool’s defense also needs to be equally vigilant against a Southampton squad that have already scored 15 goals in this season compared to 10 by the Reds. Southampton’s in form strikers Graziano Pelle and Sadio Mane will seriously test Liverpool’s defenses and the back four will need to be very vigilant.
Fatigue and injuries affecting the squad
Talking to reporters ahead of the game Klopp revealed that the squad had indeed been affected by injuries and fatigue. Daniel Sturridge, who was expected to return to the squad on Sunday, is likely to stay on the bench. Meanwhile, the likes of Jordan Henderson and Joe Flanagan are still a long way from recovery. However, the likes of Christian Benteke and Roberto Firmino are finally expected to start tomorrow after featuring as substitutes in the game against Rubin Kazan following a few weeks of absence.
Southampton won’t be easy opponents
Both Southampton and Liverpool have managed to accumulate 13 points in the season, with the Saints two spots ahead in the table because of a better goal difference. Their biggest win of the season came away against Chelsea, where they won 3-1, while they also managed to hold in form rival Leicester City to a 1-1 draw in their last game. In the last 10 meetings between the two clubs, both have won 5 games each. However, Liverpool do have the upper hand since the Saints regained promotion in the Premier League, coming out victorious on 4 occasions out of 6.