PRE MATCH: Liverpool vs Arsenal (EPL), Saturday December 29th 2018, 17:30

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nobluff

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Liverpool's form for the last 5 games is like dropping something on your keyboard, and the W key gets stuck - WWWWW - 15 points, 3 away wins, 2 home wins, 3 clean sheets, 2 goals conceded, 17 goals scored. It is halfway through the league season, and Liverpool are still the only unbeaten side in the EPL, 51 points and counting. Liverpool are still the only side to have goals conceded, in single figures, and the closest rival in goals conceded is now over 100% higher. We are top of the league by 6 points, with the unexpected part being who the closest rival is. The huge gap that we had to make up in goal difference is now gone, so its now time to start building a lead.

Arsenal are 5th in the league, and the form for the last 5 games is very balanced. It is up to our team to disrupt that balance - DWLWD - 8 points, 2 home wins, 2 away draws and 1 away loss. They have only scored 9 goals while conceding 7. Arsenal have a goal difference of 16 (5th in the league), and currently have the joint 5th best defense in the EPL, at 25 goals conceded. They have scored 41, which is 4th in the league. Arsenal is clearly a genuine top 5 team, and we haven't played one in a while.

The only injury concern we have is Milner (All the others are long term.) Arsenal have an injury crisis with about 8 players out or doubtful. The injury list has hit them hard in defense.

I am trying to think what type of game this will be. I don't think they can afford to defend deep due to the players they will start with, and they cant defend high up as our front three will blow them away. I think the midfield is going to be a very crowded place on Saturday. They have a balanced side, so can attack and can defend, however I think their focus is going to be on attack, even away from home. I believe Liverpool will field a really strong side, even to the point of ignoring what will be taking place early in the new year.

I don't really believe the substitutions in our last game is an indication of this lineup. The most balanced lineup I can think of is:

Code:
           Alisson
TAA   Lovren     Virgil   Robertson
              Fabinho
         Henderson  Gini
              Firmino
          Salah     Mane
I can only find a slight difference for my second selection, which I think will help with a congested midfield.

Code:
           Alisson
TAA   Lovren     Virgil   Robertson
               Fabinho
          Keita      Gini
              Firmino
          Salah     Mane

In the last game, I got my score prediction correct for the first time. My team selection was however the most incorrect I have ever selected.
I am going for a very calm, very professional, and extremely satisfying 2-0 win. I don't mind getting nearly everything wrong, except obviously the win.
 

Alright Now

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Liverpool's form for the last 5 games is like dropping something on your keyboard, and the W key gets stuck - WWWWW - 15 points, 3 away wins, 2 home wins, 3 clean sheets, 2 goals conceded, 17 goals scored. It is halfway through the league season, and Liverpool are still the only unbeaten side in the EPL, 51 points and counting. Liverpool are still the only side to have goals conceded, in single figures, and the closest rival in goals conceded is now over 100% higher. We are top of the league by 6 points, with the unexpected part being who the closest rival is. The huge gap that we had to make up in goal difference is now gone, so its now time to start building a lead.

Arsenal are 5th in the league, and the form for the last 5 games is very balanced. It is up to our team to disrupt that balance - DWLWD - 8 points, 2 home wins, 2 away draws and 1 away loss. They have only scored 9 goals while conceding 7. Arsenal have a goal difference of 16 (5th in the league), and currently have the joint 5th best defense in the EPL, at 25 goals conceded. They have scored 41, which is 4th in the league. Arsenal is clearly a genuine top 5 team, and we haven't played one in a while.

The only injury concern we have is Milner (All the others are long term.) Arsenal have an injury crisis with about 8 players out or doubtful. The injury list has hit them hard in defense.

I am trying to think what type of game this will be. I don't think they can afford to defend deep due to the players they will start with, and they cant defend high up as our front three will blow them away. I think the midfield is going to be a very crowded place on Saturday. They have a balanced side, so can attack and can defend, however I think their focus is going to be on attack, even away from home. I believe Liverpool will field a really strong side, even to the point of ignoring what will be taking place early in the new year.

I don't really believe the substitutions in our last game is an indication of this lineup. The most balanced lineup I can think of is:

Code:
           Alisson
TAA   Lovren     Virgil   Robertson
              Fabinho
         Henderson  Gini
              Firmino
          Salah     Mane
I can only find a slight difference for my second selection, which I think will help with a congested midfield.

Code:
           Alisson
TAA   Lovren     Virgil   Robertson
               Fabinho
          Keita      Gini
              Firmino
          Salah     Mane

In the last game, I got my score prediction correct for the first time. My team selection was however the most incorrect I have ever selected.
I am going for a very calm, very professional, and extremely satisfying 2-0 win. I don't mind getting nearly everything wrong, except obviously the win.
Thanks again, @nobluff

I had missed Asenal’s last match. Hadn’t realized how depleted they were, especially in defense. Sounds like Mustafi and Monreal are still doubts.
 

[email protected]

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I fill very optimistic About this one
We Play in our holy divine Anfield where only Godsalike can match US:tongue:
I m expecting a nice game of Football with lots Action and a invisibel Record still alive crowned with our 13 th cleen sheet for the Season.
Seeing Mane and his criminalinmind fellas of Bobby and Mo and Shaq doing enough Damage at the other end.Up the REDS
 

peter roberts

On the Celtic Ray
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Arsenal probably came the closest to beating us than any other side this season , there were times in that game at the Emirates where we were hanging on and even though we had the best chances (and a goal disallowed) we were lucky in the end I thought to come away with a point.

The game at Anfield is going to be an entirely different kettle of fish. Where we were struggling for rhythm and fluidity before we are now absolutely oozing it. And where they were clearly motivated that day by Enery's revolution and a desire to claim a big scalp in front of thir own fans they seem to be sinking back now to something resembling the Arsenal of old , good in flashes but easy to get at..Recent results for them have hardly been impressive and the ongoing Ozil psychodrama and a crippling injury list makes them ripe for the taking.

They could still spring a surprise and raise their level once again for this one but I can't see it happening to be honest. Three more points for the Reds should be the order of the day.

(P.S. Did I read somewhere that Enery had been given a touchline ban , and will it be in force for this game ?)
 

LFC-Orlando

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What an OP. Respect @nobluff

In addition to our top 3 finding their form, there's another key factor that will contribute to finally Klopp destroying an Unai Emery defense.

Sokratis Papastathopoulos.

The best (semi-fit) Arsenal CB was either played against (2 years Bremen) or managed (3 years BvB) by Klopp. Klopp knows exactly what must be done this weekend.
 

FilthyBloke

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Once I see @nobluff has done a Pre match thread, I know I can start getting excited for the game. Like waiting for Wizard to play on the radio in the weeks before Christmas.

I didn’t know arsenal were so depleted. If our front three have their shooting boots on we could do well.
Arsenal are decent in flashes. But then dire in others. We need to keep aware of their threats. They do have one of the top league goal scorers.

Just win. I’m starting to believe again, damn you.
 

ubermick

Willing to drive Lovren to the airport
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No fear against these lads. They're playing more cohesive football under Emry, but they're fifth and 13 points behind us for a reason. Two wins in their last five, they've conceded 25, and they're at Anfield. To put that in perspective, going into Boxing Day, Newcastle had conceded fewer goals than the Arse. Contain Aubamayeng, and they're well and truly neutered, and I have little doubt that the flying Dutchman will have plenty of room in his pocket for that job. To put THAT in perspective, here's my favourite wannabe...


I'm under no illusion that it'll be a routine three points, but I'll be disappointed to not bag a win. 3-1 to the mighty Reds, and we march on the Etihad next week with a point (or three) to prove.

We're never gonna stop.

(P.S. Did I read somewhere that Enery had been given a touchline ban , and will it be in force for this game ?)
He was charged by the FA for kicking a water bottle at fans, but the hearing for it won't be until end of next week, so nah.
 

Nur der BvB09

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It may Sound a bit weird but im missing the games when we had a 2 Goal lead and still shitting my pants.
No seriousely we have matured in a way in which the word to describe it must be invented first and foremost.
Up now every singe match is a finale in its own. Let s Keep focused for the game go full voice behind the Team and thrash em with all we have!
Up the REDS!YNWA
 

liver1

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Ok thats the first part done, now we need the slippery fruit reference.

@Lowton_Red youve got until tomorrow afternoon to mention it, or im going to, as any later than that and its leaving it too fine a margin before the game.

Not that im superstitious or anything.
 

Redopium

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The arse are very good on the counter attack so we got to be careful, they score lots but also concede some rather easily, I would think the only position Klopp would have to think about is right back the rest picks itself with Hendo, gini and fab in midfield. I predict a 3-1 victory.
 

KiwiKop

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Hi lads, this is from New Zealand.

Apologies for this being on a forum but can anyone help point me in the direction of where I could get tickets for the Arsenal game?

My two Liverpool mad young teen boys are in England for their first Christmas there ever with my ex-wife's family and the tickets they were promised for the Arsenal game have fallen through. They're gutted of course. At this late stage is there anywhere to get tickets? One of them is N.Z's Mo Salah in making. He'd do anything to get in.

Thanks
 

jaffod

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Only change at the back should be Clyne or Milner (if fit) for Trent given Klopp has tried not to overplay him this season.

I think Fabinho and Gini are nailed on to be the pivot with either Shaqiri or Keita pushing on. Same front 3.

Everything is in our favour for this one. More rest, no travel, we've hit some real form at last and Arsenal's defence is ripe for a good fucking - a better team than Brighton would have put them to the sword last night. I'd be very surprised if we didn't score at least 2. No guarantees though, these are dangerous going forward and VVD and his crew will have to be on their game to keep them out for 90 minutes.
Klopp owes that gurning idiot one as well, the cunt always looks like he's in pain so let's hope it's with good reason come Saturday night.
 
C

Caradoc

Guest
If we defend like we did against Newcastle on occasions then Lacazette and Aubameyang will punish us.

Our defence needs to be right on their game and our midfield need to show up. This one could go badly wrong for us so we need to be at our best. If we are, its another 3 points.
 

lfc.eddie

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Lovren again needs to keep his head together, focus. Cannot go about following Aubameyang all over the pitch, and our midfield must be alert and aware of what Lacazette could do with the ball at the edge of 18 yard box. We need Henderson or Wijnaldum for this one to cover Ozil if he starts, he hates to get roughed up and these are the two that could do the job well. Expect Torreira, Xhaka and their version of Side-show Bob to start in the middle. Salah is going to have a tough time being marked by Torreira for sure, so I would expect our boys upfront to be sharper in attacking space left by Salah.

In defence, their best player is what they call the "Greek Wall", Sokratis, someone Klopp knows very, very well. It will either be Ramsey or Ozil to start, but I think Emery might go with Ramsey due to his work rate. We just need to stay focus, not going to be as easy as some might have thought.

We need this one, we must win this. I want another green box tick in the season comparison thread.
 

LFC-Orlando

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Yea Torreira is a hack who will soon injure a player really bad.

I was hoping he'd get the yellow card but didn't...so I'm praying our forwards avoid him well this weekend.
 

XMarlin

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Watched Arsenal vs. Brighton and was impressed by their work "off the ball"

We stay focused and composed we should be able to handle this well enough to pick up 3 points.

The key to winning now is to dominate the first twenty minutes. Make every pass count and not be afraid to put in a leg if necessary to establish ownership on the 50/50 stuff.

So glad Klopp didn't field a radically changed side against Newcastle. We need confidence and consistency.

The VVD/Lovren tandem appears to be synching and Fabinho is the right guy for the job in front of them.

Should be an exciting match....maybe even close.

In the end I think well get all 3 points but it's going to take a lot of emotional composure and discipline.

YNWA
 

gasband

The Singaporean Liverpool Never Managed To Sign
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This game is more than 3 points. It's to dominate our top 6 opponents and strike fear into them. They and their fans will need to understand, we can and will win, no matter how good you think you are.
 

Red Ted

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It may Sound a bit weird but im missing the games when we had a 2 Goal lead and still shitting my pants.
No seriousely we have matured in a way in which the word to describe it must be invented first and foremost.
Up now every singe match is a finale in its own. Let s Keep focused for the game go full voice behind the Team and thrash em with all we have!
Up the REDS!YNWA
Don't worry, there's going to be plenty of pant shitting to come this season.

Also that comment reminded me how nice it is not to think "Oh fuck" every time the other team has a corner or free kick to swing in our box, defending set pieces had been a massive weakness for years & now you never hear it mentioned, says it all.
 

Red Ted

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Their bench from the other day...
  • 1Cech
  • 4Elneny
  • 8Ramsey
  • 15Maitland-Niles
  • 17Iwobi
  • 49Nketiah
  • 59Willock
Reminiscent of our shite filled benches of the past.

Bar Aubameyang their first team doesn't exactly strike fear into anyone either, their defensive situation is more shambolic than usual, if we're on our game we could quite easily run riot against them, the games I've watched them in they've given up plenty of chances against everyone, Saints were the first of the lower teams to actually take the chances.

  • 19Leno
  • 12Lichtsteiner
  • 5Papastathopoulos
  • 6Koscielny
  • 31Kolasinac
  • 34Xhaka
  • 11Torreira
  • 29Guendouzi
  • 10Özil
  • 9Lacazette
  • 14Aubameyang
 

Incognito

The Normal One
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I am confident, I hope our lads are as well; but I really hope we aren't over confident and end up having a fate like city's in the past few games. Arsenal was one of the three games we have dropped points against in the first half of what was a tremendous season and they could be really tricky to face against on their day. I hope we give them respect and get 3 points professionally without any fuss.

Mane should be the man to watch out for us, as it's been a while he's performing well, the goals have to come at some point surely. I remember it was Lacazette who scored that goal from a narrow angle against us at Emirates, I hope we contain him along with Aubameyang.

Another W please, you redmen.
 

Red Eyes

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Former Arsenal chairman Peter Hill-Wood has died at the age of 82. He became chairman in 1982 and they then won five league titles, five FA Cups, the League Cup and European Cup Winners' Cup.

RIP and condolences to the Hill-Wood family, whatever you think of Arsenal FC he took the club to great places. No coincidence their big downturn started six years ago when he left. Respect to the guy.

No doubt the management there will use this to gee the Arsenal players up, would expect them to try to come out of the blocks as fast as us.

Looking forward to a cracking game
 
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