Match: Liverpool vs Crystal Palace
Venue: Anfield, Liverpool
Date and Time: 18th September, Saturday, 7:30 PM IST
Liverpool are favourites, but Crystal Palace proved their mettle against Spurs
A convincing 3-0 win against a resolute Leeds United would have been a cause of ecstasy for Liverpool, but things were not quite ecstatic in Liverpool’s last Premier League match. While they might have been flawless on the pitch, a horrific injury dampened the spirits of the Reds.
Harvey Elliot, the young English midfielder who took the place of Georginio Wijnaldum in the team and did really well in the first few matches, broke his ankle in a rather unfortunate manner. Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp will now have to find his ideal replacement, as the Reds prepare to take on Crystal Palace on Saturday.
Despite not spending much on the summer transfer window, Liverpool have looked as good as ever before. They started their campaign with a 3-0 win against Norwich City, and then in their second match, they defeated Burnley 2-0.
The performance, however, was not spot-on against reigning European champions Chelsea, as despite having numerical supremacy, all Liverpool could manage against Thomas Tuchel’s Blues was a 1-1 draw. They got back to their usual rhythm in the last match, where they defeated Marcelo Bielsa’s Leeds United.
Under new manager Patrick Viera, Crystal Palace had a tough start, as they suffered a 3-0 defeat against Chelsea in their first match of the 2021/22 Premier League season. From then onwards, they have looked much better.
The Eagles played out a 0-0 draw against London rivals Brentford in their second match, while in their third match, they got a 2-2 draw against West Ham United. Their best performance of the season came in the last match, where they defeated another London rival in Tottenham Hotspur by a margin of 3-0. Japhet Tanganga’s red card certainly gave Palace a big advantage, but they made no mistake in taking full advantage of it, unlike Liverpool against Chelsea.
Liverpool: W D W W (Premier League)
Crystal Palace: W D D L (Premier League)
Harvey Elliot’s ankle surgery has been a successful one, but given the severity of the injury, the teenager is unlikely to be back in action until the last few weeks of the season. Thiago Alcantara is likely to take up his place in Liverpool’s midfield.
Brazilian striker Roberto Firmino has not recovered completely from his hamstring injury, while Neco Williams is also yet to recover from his foot injury. Both of them are likely to be unavailable for selection for this particular fixture.
Liverpool Predicted starting XI: Allison Becker, Trent Alexander-Arnold, Virgin Van Dijk, Joel Matip, Andrew Robertson, Jordan Henderson, Thiago Alcantara, Fabinho, Sadio Mane, Diogo Jota, Mohamed Salah
Patrick Viera will receive a boost in the form of Michael Olise, as the newly signed French midfielder has recovered from his injury. That, however, is not the case with Jeffrey Schlupp, as the Ghanian winger is nursing a hamstring injury. Besides him, Eberechi Eze and Nathan Ferguson will also be unavailable, but the latter duo are nursing long-term issues and are not expected to feature anytime soon.
Crystal Palace Predicted Starting XI: Vicente Guaita, James Ward, Joachim Andersen, Marc Guehi, Tyrick Mitchell, James McArthur, Conor Gallagher, Cheikhou Kouyate, Jordan Ayew/Michael Olise, Odsonne Edouard, Wilfred Zaha.
LIV vs CRY: Top Picks
Irrespective of who is playing alongside him, the Egyptian ‘king’ Mohamed Salah keeps on scoring consistently for the Reds. He took no time to open his tally for this season, as Salah found the back of the net in Liverpool’s first match of the season against Norwich City.
He then scored the equalizer in Liverpool’s match against Chelsea, which helped the Reds get one point from that encounter. The 29-year-old has also scored in his last two matches against Leeds United and AC Milan.
Unlike Salah, Senegalese winger Sadio Mane could not get himself on the score-sheet in Liverpool’s first match of the season against Norwich City, but he netted his first goal of the season in the Reds’ 2-0 win against Burnley.
The 29-year-old scored his second goal of the season in Liverpool’s 3-0 win against Leeds United. This match could be a special occasion for Mane, as he is just one goal away from reaching the milestone of 100 goals for the Reds.
Captain and Vice-Captain Selection
Given the form he has been in, Crystal Palace defenders will have to be on their toes for 90 minutes if they want to keep Mohamed Salah quiet. Having scored four goals already, Salah will be the ideal choice for captaincy. For vice-captaincy, we have gone with Sadio Mane, who played well in Liverpool’s previous Premier League fixture.
MPL Fantasy XI
Note: The players recommended here need not be a part of the Playing 11 on game day. Users are advised to do their own research also and follow official sources and create their teams.