Liverpool VS Arsenal, pick the home team

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Match Time: 9/29/2020 03:00 Tuesday(GMT+8)

English Premier League  -- Liverpool VS Arsenal

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The first of two meetings between Liverpool and Arsenal in the space of four days takes place in the Premier League on Monday night when the Gunners make the trip to Anfield.

Both sides have won two from two in the league so far this term, meaning that at least one of their perfect records must go in the final match of gameweek three.


Match preview

Including this match, Arsenal have been Liverpool's opponents three times in the champions' last eight games - a tally that will grow to four in nine when they meet again in the EFL Cup fourth round on Thursday night.

The two clubs know each other inside out, then, and Liverpool will also know that Arsenal have had more success than most against them in recent times, winning the last Premier League meeting and taking the Community Shield on penalties.

Neither game will have ranked particularly highly on Liverpool's priority list, though, having already been champions for some time when they met at the Emirates in July.

Monday's meeting will also be the first of those clashes to be held at Anfield, where Liverpool are unbeaten in their last 60 Premier League games stretching back to April 2017 - the third-longest such streak in English top-flight history and fast closing in on second place on that list, a 63-game run they managed themselves which ended in December 1980.

Jurgen Klopp's side did not look quite as invincible as that record suggests when they welcomed newly-promoted Leeds United to Merseyside in their last home game, surrendering the lead on three separate occasions before Mohamed Salah's hat-trick heroics eventually sealed a 4-3 victory.

Indeed, they have now conceded three or more goals in consecutive home league games for the first time since September 1982, and Arsenal will fancy their chances of causing them more problems with the firepower at their disposal.

The Reds were far more convincing against Chelsea last time out, though, stamping their authority on their Stamford Bridge hosts even when it was 11 versus 11 and then turning the screw after the Blues were reduced to 10 men.

A Sadio Mane brace made it two wins from two, in addition to a clean sheet which would have been almost as pleasing for Klopp, as Liverpool settled any doubts over their credentials with an assured and convincing display.

The Reds were in even more clinical form in midweek when they put League One high-fliers Lincoln City to the sword in the EFL Cup, running riot in a 7-2 victory at LNER Stadium.

Klopp named an entirely changed XI for that match and many of those who came in impressed, but once again Arsenal will have been encouraged by some of the openings even Lincoln were able to create in the action-packed goalfest.

That result set up the second part of this double-header between the two sides on Thursday night, after Arsenal had booked their place in the fourth round by beating Leicester City at the King Power Stadium 24 hours earlier.

It was a victory which maintained Arsenal's bright start to the season; Liverpool may not count the Community Shield among their competitive outings, but the Gunners have every right to and as such have now won six games on the bounce, including all four in 2020-21.

Indeed, in their last nine outings across all competitions Arsenal have beaten four of last season's top five - Liverpool (twice), Manchester City, Chelsea and now Leicester.

Only time will tell whether that is proof of Mikel Arteta's capability of leading his side back into the top four this season, and we will likely learn a lot in that respect over the coming weeks.

The Gunners face Liverpool, Sheffield United, Manchester City, Leicester City and Manchester United in their next five Premier League games, and if they can come out the other side of that run in good shape then they will have every reason to be confident of their chances.

Arteta will know that his side cannot afford to look any further ahead than Monday for now, though, as they aim to win their opening three games of a Premier League season for the first time since 2004-05 - when they were still Invincibles.

Arsenal are winless in their last six top-flight meetings with the reigning champions and, even accounting for the big scalps they have taken recently, a trip to Anfield remains a daunting assignment for them.

Arteta's side won just four and lost seven of their Premier League away games last season, whereas Liverpool dropped only two points at home throughout the campaign.

The Gunners were convincing in their last away league game - a 3-0 triumph over Fulham on the opening day of the season - while winning at Leicester in midweek will have only boosted the belief that their travel sickness is now a thing of the past.

However, they struggled more than most expected during the 2-1 triumph over West Ham United in their most recent league outing, and Liverpool promise to be a much stiffer test than that.


Liverpool Premier League form: WW

Liverpool form (all competitions): WWW

Arsenal Premier League form: WW

Arsenal form (all competitions): WWW


Team News

Liverpool are without captain Jordan Henderson for this match after he failed to fully recover from the injury which forced him off at half time against Chelsea.

Summer signing Thiago Alcantara could be set for his full debut as a result, having offered a record-breaking glimpse of his talent during a classy 45-minute cameo at Stamford Bridge.

However, the Spaniard missed training on Saturday while Alisson Becker was absent on both Friday and Saturday to raise concerns over their involvement.

There is better news elsewhere on the injury front with Joe Gomez expected to be available after returning to training on Friday.

The England international missed out last weekend and was replaced at the heart of the defence by Fabinho, who impressed but could return to his more natural midfield role for this match.

James Milner is a major doubt due to a calf strain, while Joel Matip and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain are both confirmed absentees.

Arsenal have a number of injury problems themselves, but Kieran Tierney is expected to be fit after pulling out in the warm-up ahead of last weekend's win over West Ham.

The Scot will likely take the place of Sead Kolasinac in the back three, although David Luiz is now available again too, which could free Tierney up to move to left wing-back.

Monday's match will come just too soon for Sokratis Papastathopoulos and Cedric Soares, while Shkodran Mustafi, Gabriel Martinelli, Calum Chambers, Pablo Mari and Emile Smith Rowe are long-term absentees.

Arteta made seven chances for the midweek win over Leicester, and the likes of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Willian, Granit Xhaka and Dani Ceballos are among the faces expected to return.

Ainsley Maitland-Niles will be pushing for a start after impressing against Liverpool in the Community Shield, while Arteta must also decide between Alexandre Lacazette and Eddie Nketiah to the lead the line - the latter having scored the winner against West Ham and Arsenal's second against Leicester.


Liverpool possible starting lineup:

Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Gomez, Van Dijk, Robertson; Thiago, Fabinho, Wijnaldum; Salah, Firmino, Mane

Arsenal possible starting lineup:

Leno; Holding, Gabriel, Tierney; Bellerin, Ceballos, Xhaka, Saka; Willian, Lacazette, Aubameyang


Head To Head

Liverpool have had much the better of this fixture in recent years, but their defeat in the reverse last season was their first in 10 league meetings with Arsenal, who could now win back-to-back top-flight editions of this game for the first time since September 2012.

Arsenal have beaten Liverpool the last three times they have faced off with the Reds as reigning champions too, while victory on Monday would see them beat the Merseysiders three times in a row across all competitions for the first time since February 2010.

Liverpool have won their last four home league games against Arsenal, though, and have not won more consecutively against the Gunners at Anfield since a run of seven between 1981 and 1988.


This fixture almost guarantees goals - the last 11 editions have produced 54, including 10 in their most recent Anfield showdown - and we can see another high-scoring affair here.

Liverpool's record at Anfield is imperious and their attack is more than capable of slicing Arsenal apart, but the visitors also have plenty of goals in their armoury and can hurt the champions if given the sort of space afforded to Leeds.

Goals have been flowing freely throughout the Premier League so far this season and we can see that trend continuing here in another entertaining contest.


Pick: Liverpool 4-2 Arsenal


Liverpool VS Arsenal, pick the home team

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