Liverpool vs Southampton Preview: Klopp looks to continue unbeaten start with visit of Saints
Ruaraidh Gillies via Flickr

Liverpool vs Southampton Preview: Klopp looks to continue unbeaten start with visit of Saints

Two sides with very differing form at the moment as in-form Liverpool entertain a Southampton side with just one victory this season.

Ryan White

The Premier League action continues this weekend as second-placed Liverpool play host to Mark Hughes' Southampton team, in a fixture that has become stylishly renown as a top-flight classic in recent campaigns.

Jürgen Klopp's men currently lie behind Chelsea in the table, only on goal difference, as they search to resume their 100% in all competitions this season - having netted a late winner in midweek to triumph over Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League, courtesy of Roberto Firmino.

As for the Saints, they come into this game at Anfield having lost a two-goal lead at home to south coast rivals Brighton & Hove Albion on Monday; despite an absolute stunner from midfielder Pierre-Emile Højbjerg to open the scoring that night.

Reds to be without striking duo

Klopp only has two injury concerns ahead of the visit of Southampton this weekend, and that is the absence of attacking duo Dominic Solanke and Divock Origi, who have featured briefly this term for the Merseyside outfit, but nevertheless are doubts for Saturday's fixture.

Whilst midfielder Adam Lallana is unlikely to make an appearance against his former club as the 30 year-old continues to recover from a groin strain - it appears the England international will face a late fitness test. 

Meanwhile, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain remains a long-term absentee following his injury in the Champions League final last season. 

Hughes light in attacking numbers

The Saints may struggle to add firepower to their squad for the journey to the north-west as Mark Hughes has two strikers out of action for the game. 

Forward Manolo Gabbiadini may feature, however, faces a very late fitness test as the Italian pulled his hamstring during training in the week. On-loan man Danny Ings is unable to play against his parent club.

Which may see Charlie Austin lead the line and could well mean young attacker Sam Gallagher makes a rare appearance for Southampton this campaign.

Liverpool favourites prior to kick-off?

If the Premier League table has any recognition than this should be leaning towards a Liverpool victory, but in recent head-to-heads, it would show that this particular fixture always tends to be competitively tight and a narrow win either way.

The Reds claimed the double over their opposition last year, although the Saints know how to win on this historic ground having picked up a 1-0 triumph in the League Cup semi-final in 2017 - Southampton's last top-flight win at Anfield came in 2013, nearly five years to the day, when now Liverpool defender Dejan Lovren scored a second-half winner for the south coast side.

Since the first meeting in 1902, the hosts have tallied 53 victories in all competitions - catastrophically topping the visitors' 30 wins - and 25 encounters have ended in the spoils being shared. 

If Mark Hughes' men were to end full-time with three points, not only would it be a historic point in the club's history, but the first-time since March 2017 Southampton had picked up back-to-back wins having beaten Crystal Palace on the road three weeks ago.