Fasten your seat belts. Liverpool vs Chelsea is just around the corner, and it promises to be a mouth-watering tie.
It’s a fixture steeped with history and is the exact match-up that involved *that* Steven Gerrard slip as Liverpool blew their title-charge in 2014.
And it is the Blues who have had the better of this fixture in recent seasons – they’re currently on a five-game unbeaten streak against Jürgen Klopp’s side.
However, Maurizio Sarri’s men have lost four of their last six league games on the road and we have them at 21/5 to silence Anfield once again on Sunday.
Meanwhile Liverpool find themselves in a two horse race for the title.
On paper, they have by far the easier run-in of the challengers and many Manchester City fans see this as the one chance they have of making ground over Jürgen Klopp’s men. Liverpool, too, know the importance of this fixture considering Manchester City still have to face Spurs and Manchester United.
Both sides are enjoying a good run of form, with Liverpool coming into the game on the back of a four-game winning streak and Chelsea looking to win for the fourth game in a row.
There is a cause for concern for the Reds, however. Liverpool have not won any of their last six Premier League home matches against Chelsea (D2 L4). It is Liverpool’s longest ever winless home run against a single opposition. Chelsea’s away record against the leaders of the Premier League is also impressive, winning three of their last four visits to the side topping the table prior to the game – including the 2-0 win at Anfield in 2014.
Roberto Firmino has started to hit a bit of form for Liverpool after a relatively quiet start to the season by his standards, scoring seven goals in his last six Premier League home matches. He is 24/5 to score first on Sunday. However, the Brazilian has yet to score against Chelsea in the league (five meetings).
Chelsea have a man in form themselves – Eden Hazard. Despite growing uncertainty regarding his future, he scored one of the goals of the season in his last game and in doing so, became the Premier League’s leading player for goals and assists this season (28; 16 goals and 12 assists). He is 39/20 to score anytime.
Liverpool boast the second-best home record in the Premier League this season and are the only side yet to lose at their own ground conceding just 10 goals in the process (three of which came in one game vs. Crystal Palace).
However, their impressive overall defensive record has wilted slightly in recent weeks with Virgil van Dijk and co. conceding in each of their last four Premier League games.
It’s now 400+ days and counting since a single player dribbled past Virgil Van Dijk and a Liverpool clean sheet is available at 7/5 this weekend.
Despite failing in this exact fixture in recent years, it would be churlish not to back Liverpool, with BTTS looking the pick of the bets at 3/4. If you want even better value for money, Liverpool to win and BTTS at 43/20 looks an attractive option.
Liverpool vs Chelsea team news
Adam Lallana looks set to return for the Reds, as does Andy Robertson after serving a one-match European suspension in midweek – James Milner will also be hoping to feature.
Both Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Joe Gomez are stepping up their recoveries but neither will feature on Sunday.
Georginio Wijnaldum is expected to be back against Chelsea after a rare break mid-week, and Dejan Lovren may well be preferred to Joel Matip in defence.
Chelsea welcomed back Marcos Alonso from a hamstring issue against Slavia Prague, and after scoring the winner he could challenge for a starting berth.
Meanwhile, it looks as though Danny Drinkwater career at Stamford Bridge is over.
Returns to the starting line-up for N’Golo Kante, David Luiz, Hazard, Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Gonzalo Higuain are all expected. Emerson and Callum Hudson-Odoi are also set to start against Liverpool at Anfield.
Liverpool vs Chelsea predicted line-ups
Liverpool XI: Alisson, Alexander-Arnold, Van Dijk, Matip, Robertson, Henderson, Wijnaldum, Keita, Mane, Salah, Firmino
Chelsea XI: Kepa, Azpilicueta, Rudiger, Luiz, Emerson, Kante, Jorginho, Loftus-Cheek, Hudson-Odoi, Higuain, Hazard
Liverpool vs Chelsea Premier League Form
Everton 0-0 Liverpool
Liverpool 4-2 Burnley
Fulham 1-2 Liverpool
Liverpool 2-1 Tottenham
Southampton 1-3 Liverpool
Chelsea 1-1 Wolves
Everton 2-0 Chelsea
Cardiff 1-2 Chelsea
Chelsea 3-0 Brighton
Chelsea 2-0 West Ham