League position: 1st
Next fixture: Monday 20th of August 8 PM
Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park – Live Sky Sport
Top Scorer: Sadio Mane 2 goals
Last Game: Liverpool 4 -0 West Ham
What’s the difference between playing what is essentially a new team with a naive manager on your own turf and playing a settled team with an astute manager in a red-hot cauldron on a Monday night? Two points in my humble opinion.
Liverpool were magnificent last Sunday but they were up against a horrible West Ham team that has barely been together a wet weekend. For me, not enough questions were asked of Liverpool’s new goalkeeper and makeshift defensive partnership of Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez on Renault’s (it’s just not right) Super Sunday, to really determine if Liverpool have truly learnt lessons of seasons gone by. I feel that the shrewd Roy Hodgson will not be setting out his team like Christians popping into the Coliseum back in the day, unlike Manuel Pellegrini. Crystal Palace will sit deep giving Liverpool time to think on the ball, which is not something they are accustomed to, and dare them to break the Palace defence down looking to utilise Louis Zaha’s blistering pace to hit on the counter. They will aim to force Liverpool into a plodding pace as opposed to their usual blistering tempo. I suspect Xherdan Shaqiri will be called upon more seriously in this fixture, and attempt to prise open the Eagles’ rearguard.
Last time around, it took an 84th-minute winner by Mo Salah and some appalling misses by Christian Benteke to earn Liverpool the spoils in a 1-2 smash and grab. I don’t feel Liverpool will be quite as lucky on Monday night.
Another question that will be asked of Jurgen Klopp, do Liverpool have a Plan B? It’s too soon in my opinion. A draw wouldn’t be the end of the world, a win would be a bonus. A loss would bring back a whole host of unwanted questions.
Live 8 PM Monday 20th of August
Dunnie’s Prediction: Crystal Palace 2-2 Liverpool
Jurgen Klopp has warned European clubs that Liverpool will not be ‘ripe for the picking’ when looking to plunder fringe players on the cheap. The latest adjustments to the Summer transfer window mean that English clubs cannot buy players before the new season starts but can still sell them up until the end of August.
The German appears to be true to his word upon the news that he has miraculously managed to squeeze £1.8m for fringe (hopeless) defender Ragnar Klavan from Serie A outfit Cagliari. The Estonian somehow managed 52 appearances for the Reds over a two year period and is a shoe-in to be involved in ‘Worst Liverpool XI to play against (insert club name here)’ in many years to come. Gut Geschichten Jurgen!
Jurgen Klopp believes Manchester City have enough quality to cope without Kevin De Bruyne and has swift and unkind words for those celebrating the Belgian maestro’s injury:
“I think somebody who thinks like that, about a situation like that, is an asshole, to be honest,” said Klopp
Well said Jurgen.
Walking Alone will return on Tuesday the 21st of August.