Liverpool vs Sheffield United: Team news, match facts and prediction

KEY POINTS

  • Liverpool have won three Premier League games in a row against Sheffield United without conceding.

  • Liverpool could go three consecutive Premier League matches without a win for the first time since May 2018.

  • Sheffield United have earned one point from their five Premier League games this season and scored a league-low two goals.

  • Sheffield United have lost 16 of their last 17 away league matches against the reigning top-flight champions, with their only victory coming in 1971-72 at Arsenal.

Premier League champions Liverpool welcome Sheffield United to Anfield on Saturday evening looking to return to winning ways in the top flight.

Jurgen Klopp’s side were held to 2-2 draw by Everton in the Merseyside derby last weekend, but will be heavy favourites to beat a Sheffield United side with only one point to their name so far.

There is no doubt that last weekend’s 2-2 draw with Everton left a bitter taste in the mouth – not only because of the result but also because of the feeling of injustice which accompanied it, both in terms of the injuries suffered and the manner in which their late ‘winner’ was subsequently disallowed.

For the first time since January 2018, Liverpool will be missing Van Dijk for a Premier League game this weekend, and so the performance of Fabinho as an emergency centre-back will have calmed fears in a timely manner.

The champions will be expected to have enough to beat Sheffield United even without arguably their most important player, particularly at home where they are unbeaten in 61 league games, winning 27 of their last 28 including both so far this season

TEAM NEWS

Fabinho looks set to continue deputising for Virgil van Dijk in Liverpool’s defence after impressing in the Champions League win at Ajax.

There is still no timescale on Van Dijk’s absence with a knee injury, while Joel Matip and Thiago Alcantara will be assessed.

John Fleck and Lys Mousset will both miss around six weeks through injury.

Manager Chris Wilder is already without defender Jack O’Connell, while Max Lowe’s Premier League debut was cut short last Sunday after he suffered a concussion.

MATCH FACTS

Head-to-head

  • Liverpool have won three Premier League games in a row against Sheffield United without conceding.
  • Sheffield United have lost 19 of the past 23 top-flight away meetings since a 2-1 victory in April 1994 (W3, D1).

Liverpool

  • Liverpool could go three consecutive Premier League matches without a win for the first time since May 2018.
  • However, the Reds are unbeaten in their past 61 Premier League home games, winning 27 of their last 28 at Anfield. They have scored 162 goals at an average of 2.7 per game during that run, conceding just 40 at 0.7 per game.
  • Liverpool have conceded 13 goals after five league matches for the first time since 1953.
  • The 25 goals let in by Liverpool since June’s Premier League resumption is the second most of any side, behind Crystal Palace’s 26.
  • Mo Salah has scored 100 goals in 159 games for Liverpool in all competitions. He’s the third quickest player to reach the milestone for Liverpool, behind Roger Hunt (144) and Jack Parkinson (153).
  • Salah and Sadio Mane have scored 10 of Liverpool’s 13 Premier League goals this season.
  • Roberto Firmino has scored only one goal from his last 57 attempts at Anfield.

 

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Sheffield United

  • Sheffield United have earned one point from their five Premier League games this season and scored a league-low two goals.
  • They are the only top-flight side left yet to take the lead in a match.
  • The Blades have failed to win in their opening five league games for the first time since 2006-07, when they were relegated from the Premier League.
  • United are winless in eight Premier League fixtures since beating Chelsea 3-0 on 11 July (D1, L7).
  • Sheffield United have lost 16 of their last 17 away league matches against the reigning top-flight champions, with their only victory coming in 1971-72 at Arsenal.
  • They have not scored more than one goal in any of their past 13 Premier League away games, totalling only six since beating Norwich 2-1 in December 2019.
  • Billy Sharp is one short of 100 league goals for Sheffield United. The first came in a 2-1 home win against Coventry City in the Championship on 11 March 2008.

PREDICTION: 2-1

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