Two English giants struggling for form in midtable will be searching for redemption when Liverpool host Chelsea, at a point where both teams appear out of the top-four picture.
Liverpool’s two league losses to start the new calendar year have undone the hard work of winning their last four of 2022, and now they will be hoping to avoid losing their first three league matches of a new year since 1953.
After declaring that he “will not go” despite their recent struggles, Liverpool boss; Jurgen Klopp, will be happier that Anfield forms the backdrop for his 1000th career game as a manager, particularly after declaring he “cannot remember a worse game” than previous PL outings – an embarrassing 3-0 loss away to Brighton.
At least Liverpool have lost only once at home all season (W10, D3), and the visit of Chelsea should serve to boost their confidence too after losing only twice in their last 15 Premier League H2Hs (W6, D7).
Chelsea began their road to recovery with a tense 1-0 victory at home to Crystal Palace, which was just their second win from their last ten PL encounters (D3, L5). What would have been particularly pleasing for manager Graham Potter, who spent 12 years as a defender, would have been their second clean sheet from their last 13 competitive matches following a run of five straight in October.
But the picture only appears more morbid for Potter and his men when they hit the road with their current five-game PL away winless streak (D2, L3) their longest since a run of seven in 2015/2016.
Despite this, the Blues could back themselves to win and leapfrog Liverpool in the process, as only on three occasions in the last 17 PL meetings between these two has the away side suffered defeat (W7, D7).
Liverpool’s Mohammed Salah will be keen to impress against his former employers after scoring home and away last season to take his tally against Chelsea to seven goals. Meanwhile, Chelsea’s Kai Havertz opened the scoring for his side in this fixture last season: something he has done on his last four goalscoring outings in the league.
No team has seen more PL goals scored before half-time this season than Liverpool’s 31.