Liverpool vs Burnley Preview: Reds look to reignite title credentials
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Liverpool vs Burnley Preview: Reds look to reignite title credentials

Liverpool will look to keep pace with league leaders Manchester City with the Merseysiders potentially kicking-off four points adrift of the champions.

Joshua Kerr

Liverpool host Burnley in the Premier League on Sunday (midday) as Jürgen Klopp's team look to keep at arms length with current league leaders and champions Manchester City

The Reds have recently surrendered their lead at the summit of the division following only two wins in their last six matches.

Klopp's side had the chance to open up a ten-point gap over Pep Guardiola's side back in January, but have since slipped a point behind the league's current pacemakers. 

However, Liverpool still remain the only team in the league still unbeaten at home and will look to extend their unbeaten record that has stayed in-tact since April 2017.

A must win for title-chasing Reds

Liverpool will host Sean Dyche and his his Burnley team who travel to Anfield off the back of two consecutive league defeats.

The Claret's a fortnight ago -  alongside Manchester United - were the only unbeaten team in the Premier League since 2019 and even produced a stunning victory over the Reds title rivals Tottenham Hotspur.

Dyche and his team seemed to have crept away from the danger following four wins from their opening six matches since the turn of the new year but defeats to Newcastle United and Crystal Palace have allowed their relegation rivals to close the gap to only five points.

Liverpool have an almighty record against the Lancashire side having won nine of their last 11 home games against Burnley in all competitions (D2) since a 0-1 loss in September 1974.

The Clarets have picked up just four points from their 27 available in the Premier League against Liverpool (W1 D1 L7), winning 2-0 at Turf Moor in August 2016 before drawing this fixture last season.

It will be interesting to see if Klopp rests any of his first-team regualars with the German manager most likely keeping one eye on the Reds crucial Champions League last-16 second leg against Bayern Munich at the Allianz Arena on Wednesday. 

Team News

Dejan Lovren may return to Liverpool's squad for Sunday but is unlikely to start from the off, while James Milner had been hampered by a muscle problem but is expected to be fit in time but will unlikely feature in the starting 11.

Joe Gomez, out since December with a fractured leg, is likely to return after the international break at the end of this month while Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, sidelined since April by a serious knee injury sustained in the Champions League semi-finals to Roma last-season, made his playing comeback for the under-23s at Derby on Friday despite hobbling off after 40 minutes clutching his hamstring.

For Burnley, Steven Defour has undergone surgery while Aaron Lennon is out with a knee injury with both players unavailable for the clash.

Dyche and Klopp's recent squabbles a thing of the past

It was the reverse fixture at Turf Moor in December that saw Klopp lose on of his most integral members to his side when Gomez hobbled off with a fracture leg following a tackle from Burnley captain Ben Mee.

The Reds English centre-back has still not recovered from the injury which sparked an outbreak from Klopp on the night when the 51-year-old manager was outspoken in his criticism of the Clarets' physical approach.

The controversy sparked a tussle with Dyche, a manager Klopp has openly admired and praised for the work he has done at Turf Moor, but the Reds boss said that had all now been forgotten.

"There is nothing to say about that any more," said Klopp. "I say what I said at the time, nearly three months ago.

"We are human beings, we react in the moment. I made a lot of mistakes in my life, and most of the time I regret them.

"For me, the game is a special situation and in different circumstances, you can imagine what is said in and around the game."