Wednesday, 26 January 2011

Reds take on Cottagers at Anfield

Article first published as Liverpool vs Fulham EPL Preview on Technorati.

Liverpool vs Fulham Match Preview

by Rhydon Atzenhoffer
January 26, 2011

Liverpool will face Fulham this Wednesday in a make-up game due to the horrendous weather that shook the Western seaboard of the United Kingdom in December. The time since then has seen what is the possible rekindling of confidence for both sides as each will hope to take maximum points.

Pantsil Brings Down Torres

The recent run of form that has struck Mark Hughes and the Cottagers was rather unexpected. While riding on the back of Texan and US National team member Clint Dempsey has been the key for most of the season, the recent return to form for striker Andy Johnson has spurned on the Cottagers. The arrival of Steve Sidwell from Aston Villa during the window looks to be a positive, but he still must beat out the likes of Danny Murphy and Dickson Etuhu for a starting 11 spot. With a record of 3-1-1 since the start of the New Year, the Londoners look to come to Merseyside ready for a fight.

King Kenny Dalglish finally got his first win this weekend against Wolves in an attacking display that has been sorely missed from the Reds this season. His fourth game in charge saw Fernando Torres continue to return to his old self scoring two goals, and witnessed Raul Meireles coming into his own as he displayed a man of the match performance at Molineux Stadium.

Steven Gerrard will also be returning for the King in this match after serving a three game ban for his red card against Manchester United a fortnight ago. Other than having their captain back the Reds have no new faces to appear under the leadership of Dalglish as the transfer battles for Luis Suarez or Ajax, Charlie Adam of Blackpool, and Charles N'Zogbia of Wigan continue to linger on. Ryan Babel took his leave from Anfield just this morning by accepting a transfer to TSG Hoffenheim of the Bundesliga.

I look for this to be a cagey start as Fulham will hope to disrupt the early flow of the game to lessen the effect of the Liverpool fans. By the 20th minute or so things should settle in much like the Wolves match over the weekend for the Reds. Torres and Meireles look to still be in top class shape with the support of Steven Gerrard to add into the balance. Fulham will rely on American wide-man Dempsey as usual and with a heavy dose of pressure on Johnson to strike. However, I foresee King Kenny getting the best out of his men again as the pass and move style from the Liverpool of old begins to flow into this new generation. Liverpool take three points putting them into the top half of the table in a hard fought 2-1 victory.

Possible Line-ups

Liverpool Possible Stating Eleven: Reina; Kelly, Skrtle, Agger, Johnson, Kuyt, Lucas, Meireles, Maxi, Gerrard, Torres.

Fulham Possible Starting Eleven: Stockdale; Pantsil, Hughes, Hangeland, Baird, Dempsey, Murphy, Sidwell, Duff, Johnson, Davies.

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