Sunday afternoon see’s Brendan Rodgers’ title chasing reds welcome rivals Chelsea to Anfield for what is the biggest game in 24 years for the Merseyside team.
Win and they will take another huge step towards winning their very first Barclays Premier League title, lose and it will heap the pressure on their young shoulders.
Chelsea on the other hand appear to have put all their eggs in their UEFA Champions League basket, especially after manager Jose Mourinho said this after their 0-0 draw with Atletico Madrid on Tuesday evening “I would play with the players that are not going to play Wednesday.”
It could all be an elaborate mind game from Mourinho but with Chelsea 5 points behind Liverpool with only 3 games remaining, it seems that prioritising the 2nd leg against Atletico Madrid would be the smart move.
Liverpool come into the match having won 11 league fixtures back to back for the first time in their history.
Chelsea come into the game having lost 2 of their previous 5 games.
Both Luis Suarez and Chelsea old boy Daniel Sturridge have scored more league goals than Chelsea’s top scorer Eden Hazard.
Chelsea have kept more clean sheets than Liverpool, 16 to the reds 10.
Liverpool come into the match with an almost clean bill of health. Only Jose Enrique is certain to miss out through injury. Daniel Sturridge faces a late fitness test and the outcome of that should determine if Brendan Rodgers makes any changes to the starting XI from the last game against Norwich.
Jordan Henderson misses his 2nd of 3 games due to the red card picked up against Manchester City.
Chelsea on the other hand have injuries and the possible rotation from Mourinho to consider. Definitely missing are Petr Cech, John Terry and Samuel Eto’o through injury. Eden Hazard will more than likely not be risked either. Expect Mohamed Salah and Nemanja Matic to both start as they are cup-tied, other than that, the Chelsea team is anyone’s guess.
Raheem Sterling is currently in the middle of the best run of form in his young career to date. He should be a shoe in for the PFA Young Player award on Sunday evening.
He has racked up an impressive 10 clear cut chances and creates a chance every 43 minutes. He has also improved his ability in front of goal and has an impressive 9 league goals.
Nemanja Matic has shown everyone what a wonderful talent he has developed into. Since his return to Stamford Bridge in January he has been one of Chelsea’s best performers.
A defensive midfielder who is comfortable in possession, Matic has racked up 29 interceptions in only 12 games and makes a tackle every 26 minutes.
Regardless of team selections this will be a season defining game for both sides. IF Liverpool win they will surely get over the line and become Barclays Premier League Champions. IF they lose then Chelsea will have the belief that they can still win the title this season.
A draw does Chelsea no good either in the title race so expect Mourinho to go for broke.
I think Liverpool will just have enough though and should run out 3-1 winners on the day.
Their first title for 24 years will then be within touching distance.