Liverpool v CHELSEA: Preview


Venue: Anfield
Date: Sunday, 27 April
Kick-off: 14.05 GMT

Whilst Liverpool could afford a draw today and still win the title (vomits in own mouth), after our cock-up against Sunderland, our best hopes of success (albeit as slim as the numbers left in our squad to see it out) now lie in Europe.
Still, given the arrogance with which they come into this game, it’ll be nice to at least let them know we’re there. So let’s try and make a game of it Jose.

MANAGER’S VIEWS
Ahead of today’s meeting, Liverpool boss Brendan Rodger’s is in buoyant mood saying “Everyone talks about pressure but that is Manchester City or Chelsea – when you spend that sort of money and expect to win the league. I don’t think there is pressure on ourselves, only what we have from within. Look at Tottenham – [when] you spend over £100m you’d expect to be challenging for the league. People talk about pressure but it’s absolutely wonderful. I haven’t slept better. It’s why we work and whatever happens we’ll have had a brilliant season. We will do the best we possibly can. At this moment, we have been absolutely outstanding.” Whilst on Jose Mourinho, he says “Jose’s a winner, he won’t give up. There’s certainly no mind games from him towards me. He knows me well enough to know that it wouldn’t bother me one iota what anyone says or does. I’ve seen some things written about them playing a weaker team but I think it’s hugely disrespectful to their players if they’re deemed to be the weaker ones in the squad. Whatever team they put out, it’ll cost more money than ours and it’ll be more experienced than ours.”
Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho meanwhile, preferring to leave the speculating to those who do it so well, says “Wait for Sunday and on Sunday you will know our team. The most important thing for me is my club and the supporters of my club. I have to defend my club and I have to defend Chelsea supporters. If we are not helped to try to follow our dreams and objectives, one more reason for us to try to think about us and only about us.”

SQUAD NEWS
For Liverpool, Daniel Sturridge faces a late fitness test and Victor Moses is ineligible. Jordan Henderson remains suspended and Lucas Leiva is likely to miss out.
For Chelsea, Petr Cech (shoulder), John Terry (ankle), Eden Hazard (calf) and Samuel Eto’o (knee), are all injured, whilst Ramires’ spends the remainder of his season on the naughty step.

TEAMS
LIVERPOOL (Possible line-up): Mignolet; Johnson, Skrtel, Agger, Flanagan; Gerrard, Allen, Coutinho; Sterling, Sturridge, Suarez.
CHELSEA (Possible line-up): Schwarzer; Ivanovic, Luiz, Cahill, Azpilicueta; Matic, Mikel, Oscar, Schurrle, Salah, Ba.

LAST MEETING
Chelsea 2-1 Liverpool (29th December 2013)

PREDICTION
I’m not even going to bother with the stats for this one because they feel largely irrelevant. In truth, it’ll take nothing short of a straight-jacket, complete with ball and chain round his ankle to stop Suarez.

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