Relegation-threatened Fulham welcome title-chasing Liverpool to Craven Cottage as the visitors look to keep up the pressure on leaders Manchester City.
An out-of-form Fulham side have a huge task at hand when they host Liverpool in the Premier League. The Cottagers have endured a difficult season upon their return the Premier League and with 13 points between them and the safety zone, relegation looks inevitable.
Caretaker manager Scott Parker will look to inspire his side to his best abilities with the hope of improving on their terrible record in the last few games. Fulham are winless since January 29th, and they have lost each of their previous six games in the league. They still have some hope mathematically, as Fulham need to win all of their games to stand any chance of staying up, although it looks unlikely they’d be able to achieve it going by their current form.
Liverpool, bearing in mind their current form and confidence, will be a complicated deal to handle for Fulham. The Reds are coming into this game at the back of an impressive victory over Bayern Munich away, and have a chance of going two points above City with a win. Pep Guardiola’s side are in FA Cup action over the weekend, and Liverpool can build on some pressure with a victory.
Last weekend, Liverpool cruised past Burnley at Anfield and might want to repeat the goalscoring feat from that game against Fulham. The Reds can be optimistic heading into the last 9 games of their Premier League season, as they will face all three of the promoted teams as well as Chelsea and Tottenham at home.
Team News & Tactics
Scott Parker has some tinkering to do with his squad as the Cottagers will be without Alfie Mawson and Marcus Bettinelli. Additionally, Andre Schurrle, who has been dealing with a virus problem could be back, but the Former Chelsea forward is still at 50-50 to make the starting lineup or the squad for the Liverpool clash.
Ryan Babel could be in line to face his former side, while Jean Michael Seri will look to push for a recall into the starting lineup for an important game like this one. Parker is set to maintain the shape of the team with the likes of Calum Chambers playing in midfield and left-back Ryan Sessegnon likely to be a preferred option on the attacking front.
Probable Lineup (4-3-3): Rico; Odoi, Nordtveit, Ream, Bryan; Seri, Chambers, Cairney; Babel, Mitrovic, Sessegnon
Jurgen Klopp is likely to be without the services of captain Jordan Henderson after the midfielder went off against Bayern with an ankle injury. Fabinho will likely be his replacement in the starting lineup. Adam Lallana, who was impressive on his rare start last weekend against Burnley could also be expected to feature in the lineup against Fulham.
Another one of Liverpool’s midfield stars, Naby Keita is racing against time to be fit for the clash after missing the trip to Munich with a minor muscle injury. Other long term absentees, Joe Gomez, and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain are expected to be out of contention for the Fulham game but are nearing their returns to the first team set up.
Klopp will be hopeful Mohamed Salah could re-discover his scoring touch after going six games now without scoring a goal. The Egyptian, however, has an impressive record of scoring six and assisting six goals against promoted sides in the Premier League. Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino will complete the attacking trio for Liverpool against Fulham.
Probable Lineup (4-3-3): Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Matip, van Dijk, Robertson; Lallana, Fabinho, Wijnaldum; Salah, Firmino, Mane
- Fulham have lost their last five Premier League meetings with Liverpool since a 1-0 win at Anfield in May 2012.
- Liverpool have won their last two Premier League away games against Fulham – they’ve never won three in a row on the road against the Cottagers in the top-flight.
- None of Fulham’s 13 Premier League home meetings with Liverpool have finished as a draw, with the Cottagers winning five and losing eight.
- Fulham have lost nine of their last 10 Premier League games (W1), including each of the previous six in a row.
- Liverpool have conceded more goals in their 10 Premier League games in 2019 (9) than they had in their 20 such matches before the turn of the year this season (8).
Player to Watch
The Senegalese international has hit his best form this season at a crucial time for his club. The attacker in addition to netting in the last six games at home for Liverpool, was also the hero during midweek against Bayern with a double there.
Mane has come back to his brilliant best when Liverpool’s other attackers, Mohamed Salah and Firmino have struggled a bit to find their rhythm.
The Egyptian has failed to score in the last six games, and Mane has stepped up and taken the team forward during Salah’s dry spell. It will be important for Mane to continue his scoring form as Liverpool enter a crucial stage of the season as they chase the Premier League title.
Fulham 1-5 Liverpool
The prediction might appear heavily skewed in favour of Liverpool, but such has been the case with Fulham and their defensive record against big sides at home. The relegation-threatened side have been leaky, and an attacking team like Liverpool are unlikely to show any mercy to Cottagers.
Mohamed Salah, in particular, will be fired up to end his recent goal drought and bring down a hapless Fulham side. Additionally, Fulham are not equipped to deal with the is the triple threat of Mane, Salah and Firmino, while title-chasing Liverpool will likely make their intentions clear with an emphatic win over the Premier League strugglers.