Chelsea travel to Liverpool to play the Champions at Anfield for MW 29 of the Premier League season. This game is being played because Chelsea will be busy with FA Cup action during the weekend when other MW 29 games are played. Liverpool enter this game sitting 6th in the table a point behind Chelsea. They have lost their last 4 at Anfield but recently managed to end their losing run in the league with a win against Sheffield United. Liverpool have been riddled with injuries this season amongst other problems. The Champions led the table for the initial few months but have gone on a decline since the New Year and now find themselves 22 points behind leaders City.
Chelsea go into this game having drawn against Man United in a game where the Blues once again failed to be clinical in the final 3rd. We sit 5th in the table a point behind 4th placed West Ham and have a chance to get into the top four once again. The defensive solidity remains and it is great to see but once again the problem that Tuchel needs to solve is how to get this team creating chances and scoring. Under Lampard this team scored 3 or more goals on 8 occasions this season and we are yet to score more than two under Tuchel. The flip side of the coin is that under Lampard we always looked capable of conceding while under Tuchel that solidity at the back has provided reassurance. The hope for this game is that Liverpool like to play on the front foot and with a high line so players like Werner, Pulisic, Havertz etc could find joy in the space left behind. For that to happen though our midfielders need to be able to pick the pass and quickly move the ball forward. That is where I think Havertz comes into play. The German can play as a false 9 and might be used there. Along with Mount he can then pick out the striker that might be making the runs.
Chelsea Team Preview
Everybody has been training but Silva is still out as he is not match fit. Tammy has a slight issue with his ankle and may or may not play. Mendy should remain in goal. I would bring in Zouma instaed of Azpilicueta to add some speed and freshness to the back three. Christensen, and Rudiger should remain on. Reece James, Kante, Kovacic, and Chilwell should continue as the midfielders and wing backs while Mount, and Werner should play behind Havertz. Ziyech could start in place of Havertz with Werner starting up front but I would like to see Havertz given a chance especially if Liverpool play as they normally do. There is plenty available on the bench depending on how the game goes.
Liverpool Team Preview
Liverpool will have Alisson back while Fabinho might be on the bench. Jota is still being assessed but expect him to at least be on the bench. Alisson, Trent, Robertson are mainstays at the back. New signing Phillips, and Kabak should start as the centre backs. Thiago, Wijnaldum, and Keita should make up the midfield with Mane, Firmino and Salah making up the front three. Milner will be available while Shaqiri, and Origi are also able to play as well. Missing a couple of big players but overall a strong team and their first choice attack.
Starting XI Prediction
Every game against a top 6 side is massive, and this is just that. Chelsea will want to bounce back from the draw and Tuchel will want to get into that top four place. Klopp will want to end the Anfield losing streak. It’s going to be a high octane game, but if Chelsea can keep that solidity and finally click up front we could take 3 points back to London. COME ON CHELSEA!!!