In a bout between the Premier League’s first and second, Liverpool host Arsenal in the big game of the week. Liverpool have managed to create an early stronghold on the first spot, after seeing title rivals Manchester City dropping points to Tottenham Hotspur last weekend.
Arsenal, meanwhile, have recorded their best start to a Premier League season since the 2009/10 campaign and look to be more settled than in Unai Emery’s first season. Dani Ceballos is acting as a much-needed orchestrator in midfield, while Nicolas Pepe is yet to make his mark in the league after sealing a big-money move from Lille in the summer.
The Gunners have quite a dismal record at Anfield, having last won a game at the Merseyside club in the 2012/13 season. Emery needs to pull a rabbit out of his hat to do the impossible of defeating the Reds in their own yard, something which not even Manchester City have been able to do in the last few seasons.
Liverpool, meanwhile, are like an indomitable monster at Anfield and are all set to break a club record of winning 12 consecutive Premier League matches in a row(via 90min), surpassing the 11 in a row set by Rafa Benitez’s side in the 2005/06 season. With Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino scoring again, Mo Salah is always a threat at Anfield, Jurgen Klopp probably wants to break the record in style with a big win.
Possible Starting Lineups:
Liverpool: Adrian, Alexander-Arnold, Matip, Van Dijk, Robertson, Henderson, Fabinho, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Mane, Firmino, Salah.
Arsenal: Leno, Maitland-Niles, Luiz, Sokratis, Monreal, Ceballos, Guendouzi, Pepe, Ozil, Aubameyang, Lacazette.
Clashes to Watch.
Alexandre Lacazette vs Virgil Van Dijk
Alexandre Lacazette opened his account for the season when he wiggled past Burnley’s defenders to score a clever goal last week, proving just how clinical he is inside the box. However, he now faces a monstrous task in having to go past Virgil Van Dijk to score at Anfield. The Dutch defensive general rarely gets outwitted, with his emphatic defensive ability and leadership empowering Liverpool. With a tricky customer like Lacazette, Van Dijk could also find things difficult as these two trying to oust each other will be a treat to watch.
Roberto Firmino vs David Luiz
On the other side, many battles are exciting to watch. However, one that’ll be especially intriguing will be watching countrymen David Luiz and Roberto Firmino taking on each other. Firmino scored a stunning hat-trick to blow away the Gunners in their last visit, but Luiz is a no-nonsense defender. Amidst his defensive lapses, he’s quite aggressive with his style, which should result in a spicy battle between these two.
Prediction: Liverpool 3-1 Arsenal.