Liverpool return to Premier League action with a trip to South London to take on Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park on Saturday.
The hosts have been the draw specialists of the Premier League in recent weeks, drawing four of their last five league games. Palace have gone eight games in all competitions without a win but have managed to pick up two points against two in-form teams in the past two weeks. Patrick Viera’s men earned a point in the derby game against Brighton a fortnight ago which finished 1-1, before narrowly missing out on all three points against Brentford last weekend. Eberechi Eze gave Palace the lead in the second half, before the Bees grabbed a last-gasp equaliser courtesy of Vitaly Janelt in the 96th minute.
Palace sit in the bottom half of the table, in 12th place on 26 points. Whilst there are five teams separating them from the bottom three, Viera’s men can’t afford to get too comfortable otherwise they could find themselves in a relegation battle, with just six points the difference to West Ham in 17th spot. A win could be enough to see the Eagles climb a place into 11th, depending on Aston Villa’s result away to Everton which is also a 3 pm kick-off.
After a poor run of results, it looked as though Liverpool were turning a corner with two positive results in a row in the league. The huge 2-0 derby win over Everton was followed up by a 2-0 away victory over a Newcastle side that are pushing for a place in the top four. Darwin Nunez and Cody Gakpo got on the scoresheet before a Nick Pope error saw the Newcastle ‘keeper receive a red card for stopping the ball with his hands outside the area to deny Mohammed Salah. With ten men, the Magpies took the game to Liverpool but were unable to find a way through as the Reds saw the game out.
Following the consecutive league wins, there was more optimism ahead of Liverpool’s midweek Champions League clash at home to Real Madrid on Tuesday night. That optimism looked justified when Jurgen Klopp’s men raced to a two-goal lead, but two Madrid goals before half-time set up an entertaining second half. Los Blancos grabbed a goal early after the break, going on to control the game and dominate the home team. A brace from Karim Benzema put the Merseyside outfit to the sword as the Spanish giants came away with a brutal 5-2 win at Anfield.
Klopp will be looking for a reaction in the league, as the Reds look to salvage their season. Liverpool are eighth in the Premier League, seven points adrift of Tottenham in those all-important Champions League spots.
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