Liverpool v Chelsea
Sun 19th August 2007 (4pm) @ Anfield
Live on Sky Sports
Liverpool’s first home league of the season is against last year’s Premiership runners up. Chelsea will be out for revenge following their last visit to Anfield when Liverpool again knocked them out of the European Cup at the Semi-Final stage. Liverpool will hand Anfield debuts to a number of our new signings and will be looking to knock Chelsea off their unbeatan start.
Liverpool and Chelsea have had a glut of games in the recent years. This will be the 16th game between the two clubs since Rafa and Jose took over both clubs in the summer of 2004. Those games have included 6 European Cup games (4 in the Semi Final), a Community Shield, an FA Cup Semi Final and a League cup final and 6 Premier League games.
Despite Liverpool’s good form against Chelsea in the cup competitions in recent years, since Jose’s arrival Chelsea have dominated the Premiership encounters. Jose won the first 5 Premiership clashes against our Rafa. However, Benitez broke the hoodoo in the club’s last Premiership clash at Anfield in January 2007. Liverpool ran out comfortable 2-0 winners thanks to early goals from Kuyt and Pennant.
In our club’s history Liverpool have played Chelsea 73 times at Anfield. A victory tomorrow would take us to 50 wins. We have drawn 14 times and lost 10 times.
Liverpool have won their first Premiership fixture at Anfield for the last 3 years. The last time Chelsea were our first hosts of the season they beat us 2-1 in 2003.
The biggest concern for the reds lies with Steven Gerrard who has a fractured toe. He is expected to have a pain-killing injection prior to the kick off. Fernando Torres is expected to make his Anfield debut, with Benayoun, Babel and Voronin also up for selection. Voronin is the only reds striker to have found the net this season in the mid-week game against Toulouse. Harry Kewell is out injured.
John Terry is back in the Chelsea squad after a few weeks out with injury. A couple of their
cheats ‘ethically-challenged’ players will be missing in Carvalho and Robben. Michael Ballack and Wayne Bridge are also out injured.
The bookies have narrowly gone for a Liverpool win, no doubt based on home advantage, at 7/5. Chelsea are 15/8 for the win. The draw is at 2/1.
The 1-1 draw is the most popular prediction at 5/1. A 1-0 win in both directions is at 7/1. A 2-1 win for the reds is at 9/1 and a 3-1 win is at 25/1.
You can get odds on Reina saving a penalty during the game at 20/1 and Michael Essien getting sent off at 28/1. Liverpool to win after going behind first is at 10/1.
Read other reds views in the Liverpool v Chelsea Pre Match Thread