When the fixture list was first announced in June, some fans will have tipped this game to include two teams in and around the top four, perhaps in the title race. No one could have predicted it would be ninth hosting 10th in the Premier League. A must-win for both sides if they are to keep their top four hopes alive, defeat will undoubtedly pile the pressure on both of these managers.
For Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool, it was an inconsistent start to the season but they appeared to have restored some semblance of normality with a four-match winning streak either side of the World Cup break. Two victories before and two after had Liverpool knocking on the door of the top four, though there was still some work to be done.
But in their past two matches Liverpool have suffered big defeats, beaten by Brentford and Brighton, conceding six goals and scoring just once. It leaves them 10 points behind fourth-placed Newcastle, though they do have a game in hand over the Magpies.
Chelsea are also 10 points behind Newcastle, and below Liverpool on goal difference, but are on the same number of games played as Eddie Howe’s side. After a good start to life under Graham Potter across all competitions, the wheels at Chelsea well and truly fell off.
The Blues have won just two of their last 10 Premier League matches, drawing three and losing five, only ending their own run of back-to-back defeats with a narrow victory over Crystal Palace at the weekend.
Liverpool vs Chelsea match stats
Liverpool have struggled up front in their past few games, but they have been able to rely on Mohamed Salah or Darwin Nunez at Anfield. Ten of Liverpool’s last 11 goals at Anfield across all competitions have been scored by either Nunez or Salah, while the latter scored home and away against his former club in the league last season.
While Liverpool lifted trophies after two of their games against Chelsea last season, all four meetings in the league and domestic cups ended level after 90 minutes (and extra-time for the two cup finals). There is also a bad home record in this fixture with the hosts winning just three of the last 17 Premier League meetings between Liverpool and Chelsea.