Liverpool host Tottenham Hotspur in a game of massive importance for both clubs on Sunday. The Reds need a victory to keep up the pace with fellow title contenders Manchester City, who with a win on Saturday will go above them in the Premier League table.
Tottenham, on the other hand, have won just one of their last 5 games and are now at the massive risk of dropping out of the top four.
Mauricio Pochettino’s side are just 1 point ahead of North London rivals Arsenal, who are in good form, and anything but a win could potentially change their position on the Premier League table.
With no margin for error for both teams, Sunday’s game would be an interesting one in terms of individual battles and here are three key battles that could decide the fate of the game and potentially the season.
With 5 goals and an assist in his last 3 games in all competitions, Sadio Mane has been in red hot form for the Reds and could be the most dangerous player on the pitch on Sunday.
The Senegalese international’s pace and dribbling skills on the ball will be massively important for Liverpool if they are to get the 3 points that they desperately need.
After a phenomenal World Cup with England and a decent start to the Premier League season with Spurs, Kieran Trippier’s form has gradually gone downhill.
After two poor performances against Arsenal and Chelsea, the Englishman was dropped for the game against Southampton but should return to the squad due to an injury to Aurier.
Trippier should be at his absolute best on Sunday to stop Mane and any poor decision making against the Senegalese could potentially cost Spurs the game.
This could be one of the toughest battles of the season and Harry Kane will, without a doubt, be Spurs’ most important player in the fixture. The 25-year-old has scored 3 goals in his last 4 games since his return from injury but has failed to help Spurs get 3 points in any of those fixtures.
Kane will be looking to lead his side to victory like he has done on multiple occasions over the last few years.
Virgil van Dijk has arguably been one of the best defenders in the world since his move to Anfield in January last year.
The Dutchman has helped Liverpool become the best defensive unit in the Premier League this season and should he continue his fine form, Liverpool will surely have the upper hand against Spurs on Sunday.
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Liverpool’s top scorer this season has been quiet recently, having failed to score or assist in his last 5 league games.
However, the Egyptian, after a good break over the last two weeks, will look to regain his best form and if fires, Liverpool can back themselves to beat the North Londoners quite comfortably.
Salah, when he cuts in on his runs from the right flank, will come up against Jan Vertonghen. The Belgian, who has been terrible for Pochettino’s side recently, will have to bring out his best if he is to stop the Egyptian on Sunday.
Vertonghen will also have to provide some much-needed assistance to Danny Rose on the Spurs’ left flank and any lapse of concentration could hurt his side dearly.
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