It’s back to the business in the Primer League for the Reds as they travel to Saint Mary’s where Liverpool haven’t tasted defeat since 2016.
Liverpool go into their second domestic game of the season looking for an 11th consecutive win in the Primer league carrying on from last season, which would match the record Brendan Rodgers set in 2013/2014.
The team news has Jurgen Klopp sweating on the availability of goalkeeper Adrian. After his goalkeeping heroics in the penalty shootout of the Super Cup, it was revealed during the celebrations a pitch invaded kicked Adrian’s ankle leaving it swollen. This may give Andy Lonergan an unexpected immediate debut for Liverpool.
The irony during one of Adrian’s great moments in his career was the cause for an injury that might put his LFC career to a halt. This initiated a complaint to UEFA from Klopp about security for players on the pitch question how injuries like Adrian’s can happen.
As well Naby Keita has been ruled out due to a hip muscular issue picked up in training on Tuesday. This on back of expecting to start the Super Cup game and possibly Saturday’s fixture makes it a stuttering start for the Guinea captain.
One possible concern is fatigue for the likes of Henderson, Fabinho etc. due to their energy they have put in the last week. This asks the question of whether the players that played 90 against Norwich and 120 against Chelsea will be rested against Southampton. Keeping in mind Southampton’s style of play will be a high press if the meeting in April is anything to go by.
There have been further questions of Liverpool’s defensive record this season. Liverpool have seemed more vulnerable at the back, conceding more goals and chances in the early games of this season compared to a year ago. Klopp dismissed these worries suggesting their defending, including their high line, has not changed but says there must be improvements as the season goes on.
By contrast, Southampton haven’t had the positive start to the season that they were hoping for as they were mulled 3-0 at the hands of Burnley at Turf Moor. For a side who last kept a clean sheet on the March 30 the defence was an area the saints clearly needed to improve. The explains the acquisition of Ausburg’s centre back Kevin Danso who may make his debut against Liverpool.
A blast from the past in Danny Ings is expected to make his first appearance against Liverpool after making his loan move permanent for £20 million and his pace and clever play will be a test for Liverpool’s backline.
Ralph Hassenhuettl didn’t take any notice of Liverpool playing 120 minutes on Wednesday night expecting “the best possible Liverpool team you can imagine”, therefore admitting the fear of a Liverpool onslaught.