After two gut wrenching performances last weekend, both Leicester City and Liverpool are going to be battling it out once again at the King Power Stadium. The Anfield Talk’s Logan (@kidddlogan) previews the matchup.
Who: Leicester City vs. Liverpool
Where: King Power Stadium, Leicester
When: Saturday, September 1
Time: 12:30 GMT (UK), 7:30 EST (US)
TV: BT Sport 1 (UK), NBCSN (US)
Although Saturday’s performance against Brighton was not a beautiful display, the job got done. The three points are in the bag and we have now turned our attention towards Leicester City.
Alisson put on his best display in a Liverpool shirt on Saturday, but he will certainly have to top that against this rampant Leicester side. The likes of Demari Gray, Kelechi Iheanacho, and James Maddison will have opportunities and Alisson will have to put on another top class performance to secure the three points.Embed from Getty Images
The back four did rather well containing the attack of Brighton on Saturday. Joe Gomez and Virgil van Dijk did well sniffing out any chances that were created and are really starting to become a powerhouse at the back. The pace of the Leicester attack will be the quickest to date that the centre-backs have encountered, and will be a big test for the duo. Trent Alexander-Arnold and Andy Robertson have been key to the way that the front three of Liverpool are performing. The way the two have been making their way into the final third have freed up the front three and have created more overall chances. The two will definitely have to be wary of how far that they do go into the final third as the counter attacking ability of this Leicester side can be deadly.Embed from Getty Images
The midfield trio of Naby Keita, James Milner, and Gini Wijnaldum have been superb. Gini has found a lot of success in the number six role thus far. The way he has held up the play and his accuracy on his passing has been pivotal in the counter attack. James Milner, an immortal human, has been remarkable. He has been a dark horse within the midfield. Naby Keita has been decent going forward the last two games, but has not been quite up to par with the front three. The midfield is most likely to be rotated for the matchup at the King Power, but if it does in fact remain the same, the trio will need to continue to outwork the opponent and feed better balls into the front three. Service needs to be decent if the Reds want to be able to finally get a comfortable victory and rest some key players as the long stretch of tough opponents is in the near future.
Firmino, Mané, and Salah have all gotten off to a decent start, but this matchup with Leicester could be the jump start to their season. Their finishing has not been up to their usual standard; however there has been no shortage of high quality chances being created.
Dejan Lovren is set to return back to the squad once the international break has concluded.
The rest of the squad will be in contention to be selected to the team sheet barring any illnesses or injuries during the warmup.
Harry Maguire’s last gasp winner last weekend was the difference as the Foxes stole all three points from Southampton.
Claude Puel’s men are starting to find quite a run of form winning their last two matches and drawing their first. Kasper Schmeichel has been the key to the results as he has been outstanding thus far. He has come up big when called upon and continued his fine form that was first demonstrated during the World Cup. Schmeichel has to come up big on Saturday if the Foxes want to steal points away from Liverpool.Embed from Getty Images
The back four of Leicester has been mediocre thus far, with the exception of Harry Maguire. Maguire has continued his uprising since the World Cup, and will be a key factor in the defence if the Foxes want to shut down the front three of Liverpool.
The midfield, led by Maddison, has been outstanding this season. The way that they are able to win the ball back and immediately start the transition to attack has been out of this world. The combination of the central midfielders and the wingers have to be able to continue to transition effectively to catch Liverpool’s midfield and defence out.
Since Jamie Vardy’s suspension, Kelechi Iheanacho has filled in quite nicely in place at the top of Leicester’s attack. Iheanacho provides a tremendous amount of pace which will be something new for the Liverpool defence. All sorts of trouble could be caused by the Nigerian if he is able to successfully make diagonal runs behind.
Jamie Vardy will have to sit out once again since his red card against Wolves.
The squad should remain unchanged from the one that defeated Southampton last weekend.
The last time that these two teams met was back in December when the Reds came from behind to win 2-1. A Mo Salah double was the difference at Anfield on the crisp December day.
The first meeting last season came at the King Power and saw Liverpool narrowly escape. A Jordan Henderson goal that came from a counter attack was the difference on that day.
I think that Liverpool will finally be able to get a comfortable victory and win 3-0.