Two teams hoping to compete for the Barclay's Premier League title meet on Saturday at lunch time as Tottenham Hotspur look to draw level on points with a so far perfect Liverpool at Wembley Stadium.
Group EPL Wembley Stadium, Wembley, England
Key Stat: Liverpool and Spurs have both scored at least once in each of their past five PL meetings.
Expert Verdict: In terms of the Premier League title battle, this could be a telling day for both teams. Liverpool have started very well, but old demons threatened them in each of the last two matches before the break. Spurs, meanwhile, lost their last match before the break and would have been frustrated to do so having been ahead. This is a massive match, and it's hard to determine which side is favorite. Because of that, a draw is probably going to be seen as a good result for both sides.
Mauricio Pochettino will receive a major boost in the form of Heung Min Son's return. The South Korea international was away at the Asian Games so that he could receive a military service exemption. He will be back and available for his side here. Striker Vincent Janssen, who spent last season on loan, remains out with a foot injury.
The standout performer so far this season for Spurs has been Lucas Moura. The Brazilian winger has been deployed centrally for the Londoners, and he has benefited from the extra marking on Harry Kane to grab three goals. With that said, Harry Kane is another player to watch. He feasts upon Liverpool, and this is usually the time of year he starts to heat up. Last season, he destroyed the Reds at Wembley. He'll want to do that again here while setting a torrid pace to regain his Golden Boot.
Spurs have two losses and three wins in their last five matches:
2-1 loss at Watford
0-3 win at Manchester United
3-1 home win vs Fulham
1-2 win at Newcastle
4-1 loss at Girona (Friendly)
Defenders:Alderweireld, Sanchez, Vertonghen
Midfielders:Trippier, Eriksen, Dembele, Alli, Davies
Jurgen Klopp has just a couple of injury woes to attend to at present. Center midfielder Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is out for what is looking like the whole season. Center back Dejan Lovren is also still recovering from his exertions at the World Cup with Croatia. It does look like new signing Fabinho is ready now, so we could see him included. Rotation could be set to come up for Liverpool for the first time, so it will be very interesting to see how Klopp plays.
Sadio Mane has jumped out to an early lead in the Golden Boot chase with four goals to his name, but Roberto Firmino has been the glue that is holding the Reds together. Whether he is making tireless runs to press the back line or making key passes, the centre forward allows Liverpool to operate at 110% for a full 90 minutes. Alisson is another to watch. With his blunder in the last match, he will be put under heavy scrutiny by Spurs and the fans in London. He must answer the call with performance of the highest quality.
Liverpool have won each of their last five matches:
1-2 win at Leicester
1-0 home win vs Brighton
0-2 win at Crystal Palace
4-0 home win vs West Ham
3-1 home win vs Torino (Friendly)
Defenders:Clyne, Gomez, van Dijk, Robertson
Midfielders:Fabinho, Henderson, Keita
Forwards:Salah, Firmino, Mane
Tottenham's win at Wembley and draw at Anfield saw them get the better of Liverpool last season, but in overall terms Liverpool have been the better side. Across 154 total meetings, the Reds have 71 wins, 40 draws, and 43 losses to Spurs. Here's a look at the last five results:
Feb 4, 2018: Liverpool 2-2 Spurs
Oct 22, 2017: Spurs 4-1 Liverpool
Feb 11, 2017: Liverpool 2-0 Spurs
Oct 25, 2016: Liverpool 2-1 Spurs (EFL Cup)
Aug 27, 2016: Spurs 1-1 Liverpool
Bet365 have the following odds available for this match:
Tottenham are at 15/8 to win, a draw is at 5/2, and a Liverpool win is at 13/10.
Tottenham enter play fifth in the embryonic PL table after four matches. Before the international break, they won their first three matches and then fell away to Watford on match day four. That loss will sting a little, but it's especially tough to play away from home. Their home form is vital to their success, and they will know that a win would be a massive result for them, even if the season has only just begun. One slight concern might be the fact that they have let in a goal in three of their four matches so far. That doesn't bode well against an attack with Liverpool's quality. On the horizon for Spurs is a big match away to Inter Milan in midweek in the Champions League. They will have to keep one eye on that match as well here.
Liverpool top the early season table at the moment having won all four matches and doing so at a +8 goal difference. However, the last two wins have not been their greatest ever. The win against Brighton at Anfield two matches back was nervy in parts, but they scrapped out a 1-0 victory. It was somewhat reminiscent of days gone by when they had failed to beat a 'lower' team when they definitely should have. There are positives and negatives to be looked at there. Then the win at Leicester was even more noteworthy due to a defensive lapse (a poor back pass by van Dijk) that set up a horrible error by Alisson, the new goalkeeper that was expected to fix issues they used to have, not prolong them. Like Spurs, they have a UCL match in midweek, and they will have their eyes on PSG as a result.
The last five Premier League matches between these two have seen both teams find the net
Both teams to score is at 8/15 via Ladbrokes.
Kane to score first is at 4.2 via Betfair.
Liverpool have been playing well in general terms of late, but this is a huge ask in Wembley. The last time they went there, they were blown away. This time around, keeping it tight and getting a point will be seen as major progress.