Arsenal Vs Liverpool
Wednesday, January 30, 2:45 PM EST
Arsenal welcome Liverpool to the Emirates today in a match where a win is more than 3 points. It’s a battle between a club which is desperate to hold on to it’s Champions league status whilst another is gunning to return back to glory days. Liverpool are currently in 7th place, 3 points behind the Gunners and a win tonight away from Anfield will do a world of good for the inconsistent Reds. Both Arsenal and Liverpool are consistent at being inconsistent and have to learn from theier mistakes if they want a shot at European competitions next season as it is already match day 24.
Liverpool have found it difficult to pick up points against the Gunners lately and they will have to toil hard tonight if they are anywhere near to retun home with 3 points. After crashing out of the FA cup at the hands of Oldham last weekend, Brendan Rodgers will be hoping to restore parity in the league as Champions league qualification could mean more than a cup title for the Reds.
Rodgers talked about club captain Steven Gerrard and the Oldham game to the press, he said:
“I can’t rely on Steven (Gerrard) for 70 games. He has been absolutely incredible. He shouldn’t be expected to come and win games on his own. He came on (against Oldham) and gave a real impetus to the team and his quality was there to be seen. Steven Gerrard and Stewart Downing come on and it is a different game and for 35 minutes we were terrific but it is too late then because we are 3-1 down then. It wasn’t good enough.”
Meanwhile Arsenal will be looking to repeat their performance against Liverpool when they travelled to Anfield during the opening weeks of the campaign and pulled off a 2-0 victory courtesy of goals from Premier league newcomers Podolski and Cazorla. After progressing through to the 5th round in FA cup on the back of a 5-1 riot over West Ham in the league, the Gunners will be heading into the match with shoulders held high.
It all depends on how the attacking trio Giroud, Podolski and Walcott perform. Whilst Walcott have continued to be a threat in front of goal, French International Giroud has done his part as well. 8 goals and an assist in 22 league games is not bad for a player who is in his first season in England.
Team News and Injury News:
Arsene Wenger updated on Arsenal’s injury status in his pre-match press conference yesterday and confirmed that Mikel Arteta will continue to remain sidelined while club captain Vermaelen will be back available for selection. Midfielders Francis Couquelin and Diaby along with keeper Fabianski will remain absent. It is expected that Arsene Wenger will line-up the same team that beat West Ham.
Ramsey, who has been doing quite well in his new deep lying play maker role that has been assigned to him and along with Cazorla and Wilshere the midfield looks decent provided there are no silly mistakes.
For Liverpool, left back Enrique returns and will be available in the bench after sitting out for a month. Goal keeper Reina will also make a return after missing out the last two games due to a thigh injury. Right back Johnson along with Agger and Gerrard will also return to first team after sitting out in their shock defeat at Oldham.
Arsenal: Szczesny; Sagna, Mertesacker, Vermaelen, Gibbs; Wilshere, Ramsey, Cazorla; Walcott, Giroud, Podolski
Liverpool: Reina; Johnson, Skrtel, Agger, Wisdom; Downing, Henderson, Allen, Gerrard; Sturridge, Suarez
- Arsenal have lost only one of their last 11 Premier League meetings with Liverpool, but six of these games have also ended in a draw (W4 D6 L1).
- The Reds have won just eight points in their last 12 Premier League away games at Arsenal (W1 D5 L6).
- Liverpool have averaged the highest possession in the Premier League so far this season (59.4%).
- Lukas Podolski tops the Premier League assist charts with nine this season following three in his last appearance against West Ham; the first player to assist three in a single PL game since Steven Pienaar in April 2012.
- The Emirates has witnessed more goals than any other Premier League stadium this season (46).
- Luis Suárez has created more goalscoring chances from open play than any other player in the top five European leagues this season (61).
- There have been seven goals scored in the 90th minute or later in the last eight Premier League meetings between Arsenal and Liverpool.
Facts Courtesy: Yahoo Sport
Prediction: 2-1 in favour of the home side.