Liverpool may have to settle for a draw against Chelsea at Anfield on Saturday as two sides hoping to finish in the top four this season go head-to-head.
There are no fewer than 10 Premier League matches scheduled for the next five-and-a-half weeks and, with only three points separating the Reds in fifth spot from Antonio Conte’s third-placed team, this weekend’s fixture takes on added significance.
Jurgen Klopp’s side have won four and drawn two of their first six home Premier League matches and have only conceded once – in the 1-1 draw with Burnley.
All of the Reds’ problems have come on the road, where they have already let in 16 top-flight goals and their defensive problems were once again to the fore in midweek when they contrived to throw away a three-goal lead in the 3-3 Champions League draw at Sevilla.
Conte has complained that his players have not been given enough time to prepare for the crunch encounter as they were involved in a Champions League game in Azerbaijan against Qarabag on Wednesday.
However, Chelsea eased to a 4-0 win in that game against a side that had been reduced to 10 men in the first half, while they have a good record away from Stamford Bridge this season, winning five of their six away Premier League fixtures.
Conte’s team have won their last four Premier League matches and kept three clean sheets in a row so are good enough to return to the capital with a draw, available at 51/20.
Each of the last three encounters at Anfield between the two teams have ended in 1-1 draws and a repeat of that scoreline this weekend can be backed at 27/4 while the odds on both teams scoring are 5/8.
Meanwhile, in-form Mohamed Salah is 33/20 to score at anytime against his former club.
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