Monday, May 29, 2023

Prediction: Leicester City vs Liverpool

Veselin Trajkovic in Free Soccer Predictions 14 May 2023


Verdict: Away win

Best odds: 4/7

Bookmaker: Betfair

Leicester City and Liverpool will go against each other in the 36th round of the Premier League season at the King Power Stadium on Monday evening. With both sides desperate to earn as many points as possible between now and the end of the month, it should really be an interesting contest.

Leicester City

Having taken them to great heights over the previous years, Brendan Rodgers, a former Liverpool boss of course, was sacked in early April because Leicester were heading straight for the relegation scramble as the campaign progressed. Nine days later, the club appointed former Aston Villa and Norwich City boss Dean Smith in his place, but things haven’t exactly improved since.

Only Southampton, whose relegation has now been mathematically confirmed, lie below the Foxes in the Premier League table at the moment. Smith’s team have 30 points from 35 games to their name. Leeds United in 18th place have 31 having already played their 36th game, Everton in 17th have 32, 16th-place Nottingham Forest have 34, and West Ham in 15th have 37. These are all teams that haven’t yet secured survival, but some are obviously in better positions than others, and Leicester, unfortunately from their point of view, belong in the latter category.

The Foxes form isn’t encouraging either at this point – they won only one of their last six games, drawing two and losing three. They lost at home 0-1 to Bournemouth, lost 3-1 away to Manchester City, won 2-1 at home against Wolves, drew 1-1 away to Leeds, drew 2-2 at home against Everton, and lost 5-3 away to Fulham last week.

A brace from Harvey Barnes together with a James Maddison penalty proved insufficient at Craven Cottage, as Willian and Tom Cairney scored twice apiece and Carlos Vinicius also got on the scoresheet for the hosts.

Team News

Smith cannot call upon defenders James Justin (calf), Ryan Bertrand (match fitness) and Jannik Vestergaard (calf, out for the season), as well as forward Kelechi Iheanacho (groin).

With Daniel Iversen in goal, Wout Faes is likely to start in the heart of defence with Caglar Soyuncu by his side. Young Victor Kristiansen should be on the right defensive flank, though Luke Thomas is a possibility too, with Timothy Castagne on the right. Wilfried Ndidi should come into the side in the place of Boubacar Soumare and pair up with Youri Tielemans in the heart of defence. Veteran striker Jamie Vardy should start upfront ahead of Patson Daka, with the trio of Barnes, Maddison and Dennis Praet.


Liverpool have had a disappointing season too, of course, though they’ve recently hit an excellent level of form, winning all of their last six matches. They beat Leeds United 1-6 away, Nottingham Forest 3-2 at home, West Ham 1-2 away, Tottenham Hotspur 4-3 at home, Fulham 1-0 at home, and eventually Brentford by the same scoreline, also at home.

It was Mohamed Salah who proved the difference maker for his team again against the very resilient Bees, forcing the ball across the goal line in the 13th minute.

Until this magnificent run began, it seemed that last season’s Champions League and Premier League runners-up and winners of both domestic cups could easily miss out on European football altogether, but now it’s practically certain that they will be playing in one of the three UEFA competitions.

Still, as things stand at the moment, it seems likely it’ll be the Europa League. A top-four finish remains out of their hands for now, with Manchester United in fourth and Newcastle in third still ahead by four points each. The Merseysiders obviously need one of those teams to fumble twice in the remaining three matches, preferably Manchester United whose goal-difference is significantly weaker, while Newcastle remain superior in that aspect as well. It goes without saying that Jurgen Klopp’s men must win all of their matches to get into a position to exploit such a development even if it comes to pass.

Team News

The season is over for three Liverpool players – midfielders Thiago Alcantara (hip) and Stefan Bajcetic (groin), as well as defender Calvin Ramsay (knee). Midfielder Naby Keita and forward Roberto Firmino could come back for the Aston Villa game next week, but the Leicester trip comes too soon for them.

Alisson Becker will be in goal, with Ibrahima Konate likely to partner Virgil van Dijk in the centre-back area. With Andy Robertson on the left, Trent Alexander-Arnold will start on the right defensive flank, but expect him to roam into the midfield frequently to join in the playmaking duties. There, he’ll be close to Fabinho at the base, with in-form Curtis Jones playing between the boxes.

Klopp chose to start with four forwards against Brentford, and it wouldn’t be surprising if he did so again. If so, Luis Diaz is likely to play on the left, Salah on the right, with Cody Gakpo and Diogo Jota attacking through the central areas, and Darwin Nunez waiting for his chance on the bench.


Given the notable difference between the two sides in terms of quality, not to mention current form, anything but a Liverpool victory here would be a surprise, despite Leicester’s desperate case.

Verdict: Away win

Best odds: 4/7

Bookmaker: Betfair


Veselin Trajkovic

Vesko is a football writer that likes to observe the game for what it is, focusing on teams, players and their roles, formations, tactics, rather than stats. He follows the English Premier League closely, Liverpool FC in particular. His articles have been published on seven different football blogs.



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