Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Prediction: Watford vs Liverpool

Verdict: Liverpool

Best Odds:11/20

Bookmaker: Bet 365

Liverpool will be desperate for the three points when they travel to Vicarage Road and play Watford on Monday night. The Reds are still dreaming of a top-four finish in the Premier League, but will be feeling the pressure as the season nears its end.

Watford

Watford have already hit the 40 points safety net and judging by their 2-0 loss at Hull City last week, they are already thinking about their summer holidays. The Hornets had a one man advantage for most of the match after Tigers striker Oumar Niasse was controversially sent off in the first-half, however Walter Mazzarri’s men still failed to win the game against their relegation-threatened opponents. Although Watford’s away record has not been the greatest of late, with four losses in a row, their home form has been quite the contrary. Three consecutive wins to nil, against Sunderland, West Bromwich Albion and Swansea City has given the Vicarage Road faithful something to stay cheerful about.  With all due respect, though, Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool are a different class of opponent that will aim to give Watford’s defence all sort of problems through their attacking supremacy, meaning the Hornets could be in for a long night. Nonetheless, Mazzarri‘s men are currently in the top-half of the league and will motivate his players by challenging them to stay there.

Team News

Defender Craig Cathcart is a doubt because of a knee problem. Valon Behrami could also miss out but will take a late fitness test.

Younes Kaboul, Roberto Pereyra and Mauro Zarate all remain sidelined.

Liverpool

Liverpool’s hopes of finishing in a top-four position are still achievable, but they made their task slightly harder by losing 2-1 at home to Crystal Palace last Sunday. The Reds currently occupy third place in the league but if Manchester United and Manchester City win at the weekend, then they could be out of the Champions League places come kick-off. However, manager Jurgen Klopp will be telling his players if they can win their remaining four fixtures then they have a great chance of achieving their aim. Liverpool have already proved they can put that kind of run together when they embarked on a seven match unbeaten run, winning five of those, prior to the Palace loss. This is a massive game for Liverpool and one they really need to win, but defending set-pieces have been a problem for them and they need to have improved this area if they are to get anything from the match. Watford will look to get the ball to captain Troy Deeney at any given opportunity and he could prove a nuisance for them on Monday night.

Team News

Midfielder Adam Lallana has a chance of being fit after returning to first-team training for the first time since his groin injury a month ago. Daniel Sturridge could also return after missing the match against Crystal Palace due to a hip problem.

Captain Jordan Henderson is still injured, and Saido Mane, Ragner Klavan and Danny Ings are all long-term absentees.

Key Factors to Consider

  • Watford have lost five of their last six matches against Liverpool
  • The Reds have won 10 of their previous 12 meetings with the Hornets
  • Liverpool are aiming to win three consecutive away games under Klopp for only the second time
  • Watford last won back-to-back matches against Liverpool back in May 1983
  • All six of Liverpool’s Premier League defeats have come against sides outside the top seven

Conclusion

Liverpool really can’t afford any more slip-ups and we can see Jurgen Klopp’s men getting back on track with a victory. Even though Watford have been in-form lately at Vicarage Road, their season is more or less over now and the game means so much more to the Reds.

Verdict: Liverpool

Best Odds:11/20

Bookmaker: Bet 365

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Ashley Randall


Ash is a freelance football writer who lives, breathes and dreams the beautiful game. A lifelong Wolverhampton Wanderers season ticket holder, if he isn't at Molineux then he will be watching any game on television that he can set his eyes on. Producing work for various football websites and publications, Ash has also written for regional newspapers and global magazines.

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