Sakho vs Mitrovic And Other Key Battles That Will Decide Liverpool’s Game vs Newcastle United

After an emphatic derby win against Everton, the Merseysiders will welcome Rafa Benitez’s Newcastle, who are fighting to stay in the league.

Besides the game, it will be an emotional return of the Spanish manager to his old side who had many memories to cherish. This time out, he will be coming with an intention to get all three points. Liverpool’s last game was a classic derby game in which the side was able to beat the Toffees by 4 goals to nil. Newcastle, on the other hand, showed some improvement as they were able to settle down with a point against Manchester City.

The last time these two sides met, Newcastle got the goal somehow and managed to hold on their lead. The scenario will be completely different this time as the team is more confident and is more attacking. Although Liverpool have the upper hand in the game as they will be playing on their home and are unbeaten in their last 5 home games at this very moment.

Let us look at the 3 key on-field battles that will decide the upcoming match-

Sakho vs Mitrovic-

Sakho is turning into a monster in terms defending. The former PSG player was never a star under Rodgers, but Klopp has turned him into an absolute strong defender. He needs to continue his run of form if he tends to be the best in the world and believe me Klopp can make it happen for the French man.

Most probably, he will be facing the six-foot tall striker Aleksandar Mitrovic who is more of a target-man type than Cisse and can offer strong physical presence up top. Though Newcastle are having a bad season, this player hasn’t stopped scoring for the club. This will be more of a physical battle where both of them will be looking to cancel each other out.

Lascelles vs Sturridge-

Lascelles is a great defender, he just needs a leader who could guide him and could bring his career on track. Being a central defender, he is capable of playing some extraordinary long balls that could set the door for Mitrovic to score. The 6’2” central defender has a great aerial presence and can easily out muscle number of premier league strikers. He has the pace that could easily match Daniel Sturridge who will surely lead the line for his side as Origi will most probably miss the game due to his injury.

Lascelles often gives away fouls in aerial challenges and Sturridge could well take an advantage of this. Sturridge is a great striker and is capable of finding the space in the defence to take the shot while Lascelles being the only tough option for the team might face some difficulties to cope with pace and attacks of Liverpool.

Lucas vs Townsend-

Lucas missed most of the games due to injuries this season but he has come back with a bang. Gave some extraordinary performances and gave Klopp a headache in terms of picking the players for the game. He is one of the best holding midfielder in the country who can play in a various positions. As the attacking side of the team will be packed with the pacey forwards, Lucas might be played as a defensive midfielder.

And if he plays the mentioned position, he will have a tough time to face the ex-Tottenham player Andros Townsend. Townsend may not have a great season to cherish but he is coming back into his shape under Benitez. The manager has shown confidence in the player and that is working out well. Townsend is an intelligent player who can well link up with the team-mates. Had a good game against City and Klopp is well aware of the threats he can cause. Lucas versus Townsend! Seems a tough battle.



Written by Swapnil Bhopatkar

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