Preview: Bournemouth vs Liverpool
Victorious at Turf Moor in midweek, the Reds will once again be on the road this weekend. Bournemouth will be their opponents, as Eddie Howe’s men will be looking to build upon their win against Huddersfield. With Liverpool needing all 3 points, here’s the preview for the game.
Shaping up to cross, Joe Gomez was slide tackled by Ben Mee. Immediately, fans could tell that it was serious, as Gomez stayed down and had to be eventually stretchered off the pitch. It was ultimately determined that he’d suffered a fracture in his left lower leg, which makes him unavailable for the next 6 weeks.
Gomez’s injury is a huge blow to the team, not just his versatility but also his understanding with regular partner Virgil van Djik. Together, the pair complement each other perfectly with pace, awareness, and good communication. With them at the back, the Reds are no doubt a better defensive unit.
Now that the 21 year old has been ruled out, it’s time for Matip and Lovren to step up. Matip,who had a decent outing against the Clarets, is set keep his place this weekend. Lovren is unavailable, but he might play against Napoli. Nonetheless, these are 2 hugely important games that the Reds have to win, which is why both defenders have to be at their utmost best in order to maximise victory.
Cherries Ripe for the Picking?
Prior to Wednesday’s win against Huddersfield, the Cherries were on a 4 game losing streak. And even after going into the break 2-0 up, Bournemouth just about managed to survive a second half onslaught by the Terriers. Part of that was due to the pressing done by Wagner’s team, which force their opposition to make error after error.
After seeing his close friend nearly pulling it off, Klopp must know that pressing is the key to winning this game. For that reason alone, it’s safe to assume that Firmino will start the game at Vitality Stadium. The forward, so vital to the gaffer’s pressing machine, will be looking to nick the ball off defenders, immediately transitioning from defence to attack.
All that said, it’s important to note that the Cherries posses danger in the form of Callum Wilson. With 8 goals in his 15 league appearances this season, he’ll be Bournemouth’s likeliest source of goals. And with him tending to drift towards the right, Robertson has to be especially alert on that flank. With 38% of their attacks coming from their right flank when playing at home, Liverpool have to pay special attention to that flank. That way, they are more likely to achieve a shut out, and hopefully another win.
A Chance To Go Top
Kicking off early on Saturday, Klopp’s men have the chance to go top of the table. While it may only be for a few hours, with Manchester City playing later, it’s an opportunity for Liverpool to put pressure on their rivals. For weeks, they’ve been playing catch up, a test which they’ve passed brilliantly. So to have Manchester City to be the ones this weekend is great, as the Reds are able to assess their challenger’s mentality.
However, the Reds have to first pick up all 3 points on Saturday. Though heavy favourites, winning 7-0 on aggregate against Bournemouth last season, there can’t be any room for complacency. Being right in the mix right now is the most important thing for Liverpool if they harbour hopes of winning the league. That way, the Citizens might be slightly unnerved when they find the Reds still breathing down their necks come January.