Liverpool vs Stoke Match Preview: Reds Aim to Continue Good Form

After two successive cup games, Liverpool return to league action this Saturday with a home fixture against Stoke City. The Reds have already met Tony Pulis` men on two occasions this season, suffering a contentious 1-0 defeat at the Britannia in September before gaining a degree of revenge a month later with a 2-1 victory in the Carling Cup.

Dalglish’s side have been far too inconsistent at home this season. While they are unbeaten in 10 league matches at Anfield, they have drawn four of them. However, since the return of Steven Gerrard, Liverpool’s frail look since Suarez’s absence, not to forget Lucas’, who was outstanding for the Reds, has suddenly disappeared. Gerrard has led from the front since his return, and after seizing an important advantage in their attempt to reach Wembley for the first time since 1996, Liverpool will be hoping to continue their impressive recent run of form.

A clash with Tony Pulis’ Stoke is the first of three very winnable games for Liverpool, with meetings against Bolton and Wolves to follow. Liverpool will host Tottenham and travel to Old Trafford for a clash with Manchester United after those first outings. Stoke have been on a rise of their own however, and are not to be underestimated. Recent progress in the FA Cup following a 1-3 away victory against League Two side Gillingham and entering the round of 32 in the Europa League is indeed worth the praise. Also, with the Potters being the current incumbents of the eighth spot in the League, it is safe to say that all is well at the Britannia. But, Anfield is a very hard place for them to go on Saturday and Matthew Etherington and Jonathan Walters, who have both laid on five assists this campaign, will need to produce their best if Stoke are to come away with anything.

Liverpool will be brimming with confidence after recent results and I expect them to come away with a comfortable three points. The Reds will be without Lucas and Suarez, with Spearing ‘touch and go’ according to Dalglish. Henderson will be the player to watch this weekend after his impressive, energy-sapping performance vs Manchester City, and along with Downing, Adam and Bellamy will provide a strong source of pace and creativity behind Gerrard, who could start just behind Carroll. Former Red Peter Crouch will lead the attack for Stoke and will be trying to score his first goal against them in his ninth attempt.

Stoke have scored just eight goals away from home so far this season. Only Fulham have a worse record having netted just six times on their travels. Equally worrying for the Potters is the fact that Liverpool have conceded just eight times at home in the league, a statistic bettered only by Arsenal and Manchester City.

9 thoughts on “Liverpool vs Stoke Match Preview: Reds Aim to Continue Good Form”

  1. Liverpool proved again today that they are nothing more than a midtable team. They bought midtable British talent and it shows. Actually, these average players haven’t even been average but poor. What a waste of 20 million for Downing who looks like the most uninterested player on the pitch, Henderson who looks like a clueless schoolboy, Adam who makes the worst decisions and just looks for those hollywood passes that are hit and miss and Carroll? Newcastle made 35 million in the easiest possible way and then brought in Demba Ba on a free. Talk about striking gold.

    Liverpool need to cut their losses and sell their mediocity and buy quality players who will cost less if they go abroad to buy. And bring in a manager with better tactical awareness that isn’t bogged down in the 80’s.

    1. Calling Liverpool a mid table team when they have the best defence in the league, are unbeaten at home and have hit the woodwork more than any other team is a little harsh I reckon. They have also proven against the teams above them (apart from the thrashing by Spurs) that they can compete with the best on their day. The problems arise when the so called smaller sides play against the reds and do their impression of General Custer’s last stand at the battle of Little Big Horn. Stoke was another example of a team playing 4-5-1 and simply frustrating Liverpool in to submission. There is no doubt that they lack the spark of a Modric, Silva or Rooney who can win such games that seem to be going nowhere in a second, but I am sure that the manager and board are looking in to resolving this problem as we speak.

      1. Roy which is smaller team? I guess you think you can score playing with 5 defenders at home against a so what you call small team. I am a Liverpool supporters but I guess most of Britons Liverpool supporters live in the past. Surely the team has a lot of average british players. Wonder Henderson and Downing can make in which top team? Stop being a day dreamer and accept the fact. Do you mean these small teams dont paly Man Utd, Man City, Tottenham etc? So look at the big picture.

        1. Personally, I’m glad there is someone that has the bravery to speak out against Downing, Henderson, Adam, and Carroll, because up to now, no one has had the guts to mention how some of them are underperforming and that Liverpool overpaid for them. It is a breath of fresh air to read a post that speaks on this.

  2. Liverpool continues their brilliance anywhere on the field except in the opponents penalty area. With Suarez on suspension, why in the world is Carroll not starting?

    Personally, I want to know why Delap didn’t long throw the ball in the final minute of the game, instead throwing short. Stoke had all of zero offensive opportunities, and that seemed like a great chance to get a ball into Crouch to try and steal three points.

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