Stamford Bridge might not have spared a reason for Brendan Rodgers to cheer about, but the class in which the merseyside laid out cannot be understated come what may. Although, Liverpool just missed the Capital One cup finale by inches, nonetheless, their contention for a top four slot in the Premier League tables still continues to breathe life.
Keeping the zing alive, the Reds gear up to face West Ham in a home fixture this weekend. With just two victories in the last five league home matches, it doesn’t sound anything really colossal for the home side and Rodgers’ would be considering a regency against West Ham post the Chelsea aftermath. Meanwhile, Sam Allardyce’s West Ham has been playing really well round the clock. With a well organized defence line-up, the visitors have registered three victories in their last face-offs.
Interestingly, the Hammer’s have been a complete non success at Anfield over the years. As a matter of fact, the last time they actually won a league match at Anfield traces way back in the early sixties. However, Sam Allardyce’s men have headed in more goals than any other team in this edition of the Premier League and they can bring about some real problems to the hosts from set pieces. Now that’s something, which is likely to cause Rodgers’ some big time anxiety.
Team News and Prediction:
The bars have been a major concern for Rodgers’ in throughout the Premier League season. With Bradley Jones missing out with an injury, the boss, has no option other than Simon Mignolet to manage the posts. Brushing all criticisms aside, the Belgian seems to have picked up some momentum lately; looked more assured between the posts against Chelsea in the Capital One Cup semis and is likely to hold his berth between the bars against West Ham in the Saturday fixture.
Coming to the defence line-up, Glenn Johnson might remain on the sidelines as of now. Kolo Toure, too, remains unavailable for the African Nations Cup. Mamadou Sakho is expected to start at the left side of the back three. The Frenchman limped off the park at Stamford Bridge in the second half. However, he should be fit enough to shrug off his injury and feature in the playing eleven on Super Saturday. Martin Skrtel, on the other hand, has been in great touch lately and remains a key player at the central defence while, Emre Can chipping in at the right.
The midfield line-up may presumably witness a switch on Saturday. The skipper Steven Gerrard might be retained at the dug out with Adam Lallana turning up in the forward three. Lucas Leiva shall be another important player, if the Reds are to look good in the middle of the park. Meanwhile, Lazar Markovic continues to be the tried-and-true one at the right-wing back. Jordon Henderson is expected to come in good in shoring up the midfield.
Rodgers’ has been seemingly reluctant to deploy the likes of Fabio Borini and Rickie Lambert. The latter have just three top-drawing goals between them in the current Premier League spell. Nonetheless, with Raheem Sterling featuring on the cards, Rodgers would have little to worry about. The rookie striker has been a consistent performer in the Reds jersey. Meanwhile, on the good side of the news, Daniel Sturridge is all set to make a comeback at Anfield post a five month injury cut off. Sturridge should find himself on the bench, while Sterling and Philippe Coutinho is likely to gear up as the attacking trio for the Saturday game.
An interesting face-off is expected at Anfield as both sides fight it out for a slot in top six of the League. In the meantime, let’s get a load of the projected line up which Rodgers may likely deploy as Liverpool goes one on one with West Ham:
- Goalkeeper: Simon Mignolet
- Defence: Mamadou Sakho, Martin Skrtel, Emre Can
- Midfield: Lucas Leiva, Jordan Henderson, Alberto Moreno, Lazar Markovic
- Forward: Raheem Sterling, Philippe Coutinho, Adam Lallana
League Standing: 8
League Points: 35
League Form: LDDWW
Possible Formation: 3-4-3