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Premier League 2019 Liverpool vs Arsenal

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Liverpool and Arsenal are the only two teams in the English Premier League which have collected maximum six points from the first two rounds. That perfect record will definitely change after this match and both teams will try to stay on the summit after the third round.

 

Perfect Home Record for the Reds


Anfield has been a real fortress for Jurgen Klopp’s men for quite some time now. Driven by the support from the Kop, Liverpool have managed to beat one team after another and are unbeaten at home for 41 consecutive games. The run started as early as the 2016-2017 season and has been going on ever since. Out of those 41 games only 10 have been draws and that tells a story of a team which goes for all three points whenever they play at home.

Furthermore, when playing at home, Liverpool have almost always scored more than one goal, especially when they won matches. In fact, they are currently on an eight match winning run in front of their own fans and in all of those matches the Reds have scored two or more goals.

In addition to goals, clean sheets are also a very common occurrence in Liverpool. Of those eight wins in a row, five have actually come with a clean sheet as well. Liverpool are a real machine when playing in front of their own fans.

 

Liverpool’s Year


It’s not just in front of their own fans that the Reds are winning though. Currently, they are on an 11 match winning run in the EPL. This is because they had a very strong end to last season and pushed Manchester City’s title challenge all the way to the wire. Only the smallest of margins decided which team was going to be the champion last season and it wouldn’t have been unfair if Liverpool ended the season top of the table.

In fact, their 97 points would have won them the title in 25 of the past 27 seasons and they only missed out on the title because another excellent team in Manchester was having a season as magnificent as theirs.

However, last season was not a freak occurrence and it is to be expected that Liverpool are finally going to win that coveted EPL title after so many years of waiting sooner or later. Lots of people say that this might be their year and you wouldn’t blame them. The Champions League winners have a complete team and world class players in most positions and in Jurgen Klopp they have one of the best managers in the world.

 

World Class Players


Liverpool are lauded as one of the teams with the best transfer strategy in recent years. The Reds didn’t spend money on lots of different players, but strengthened with world class players in positions of need. That’s how they got Mo Salah, Sadio Mane, Virgil Van Dijk, Alisson, Fabinho and several others.

They addressed their squad issues intelligently and did it so well that this year they didn’t even need to buy any players, at least not players that they consider for the first team.

And why would they buy anyone when they have arguably the most complete team in the EPL. Their goalkeeper is number one for a Brazil team which also contains Ederson and is probably the best goalkeeper in the world. Alisson is currently injured and his deputy Adrian will be between the posts for the Arsenal match, but during the course of the season the Brazilian will be a huge influence.

In terms of defence, Liverpool’s back four is a great mixture of youth and maturity and supremely talented players such as Andy Robertson and Trent Alexander Arnold are under the guidance of the best centre back in the world right now Virgil Van Dijk.

Liverpool’s midfield is also packed full of talent and players such as Jordan Henderson, Fabinho, Georginio Wijnaldum, James Milner, and Alex Oxlaide Chamberlain can play some of the most dynamic football that you have ever seen.

However, Liverpool’s most crucial component both in terms of their attacking and defensive game is the attacking trident of Mane, Salah and Firmino. Liverpool’s defence starts with those three players and most of their attacks end with them. The trio presses high up the pitch during every opposition attack and opposition defenders have to be on top of their game to keep their composure when faced with the threat that these three players pose.

When they do take control of the ball, and that happens quite often, they are lethal. Of the three, Sadio Mane is in the best form right now and Arsenal defenders should pay special attention to Liverpool’s left wing. However, that might open more space for Salah and Firmino down the right and middle and you can see why Unai Emery sounds quite worried when talking about the Liverpool match and even says that his team never wants to play Liverpool.

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Arsenal’s Perfect Transfer Window


Liverpool might have world class players in most positions, but that definitely cannot be said about their Saturday opponents. Up until last year, the Gunners went into every transfer window without a particular strategy and even changed their chief scout and sporting director Sven Mislintat midway through his contract. This was indicative of a club without a transfer strategy and on-pitch results certainly showed this lack of vision.

However, during that period of time Arsenal made one smart decision and that was appointing Unai Emery as their manager. The Spaniard is known as a master tactician, but he has also gained a reputation as someone who can work miracles on a small budget.

With a budget said to be around £50 million, Emery’s transfer magic was certainly put to the test before this summer’s transfer window commenced. However, once the transfer window ended the Gunners could say that they signed high quality players and many experts said that they had the best window of all Top 6 clubs.

The Gunners managed to sign players such as Nicolas Pepe, William Saliba, Kieran Tierney, David Luiz, and Dani Ceballos on loan. These signings were definitely not what Arsenal fans expected and needless to say they were positively surprised.

With their new players, Arsenal have addressed one of their biggest weaknesses, their defence. In Saliba, Tierney and David Luiz they have acquired much needed reinforcements to strengthen their fragile defensive wall. Fans were particularly impressed with their club’s business on the last day of the transfer window when the Gunners brought both Luiz and Tierney to the Emirates.

 

Liverpool to Win


As much as Arsenal have reinforced their ranks though, Liverpool are still far too strong for the Gunners. Unai Emery is afraid for his team’s chances for a reason and he will be more than happy if his side hold out for a draw here.

However, that is highly unlikely to happen especially as Liverpool have had a full week to recuperate after their last EPL match. The Anfield side had problems with their fitness levels last week against Southampton after having to play 120 minutes in the European Super Cup only three days prior. In spite of those fitness problems, they still managed to win. Now that they have had a full week to recover and have most of their starting options fit and ready to go it is difficult to see anything but a convincing Liverpool victory here.

If that is not enough to convince punters to back Liverpool in this match, they should also take a look at the two clubs’ head-to-head matches. The last time Liverpool lost to Arsenal was way back in 2015 and the last time Arsenal held Liverpool to a draw at Anfield was in January 2016. Arsenal’s last victory at Anfield came in 2012 and to put things in perspective that was a year when the likes of Diaby, Arteta, and Gervinho still played for the Gunners.

Jurgen Klopp’s side will have to do their job professionally here, but that should be more than enough to put aside an Arsenal side which is quite good, but is nowhere Liverpool’s level right now.