Date: Fri 30th January, 2011.
Referee: Lee Probert.
Liverpool are just one point and one place above us in the Premier League which makes this one of those so-called ‘six pointers’ that are revered and worshipped in the land of punditry. Liverpool have not lost at home this season but neither have they dominated, having chalked up just 3 wins from their 9 games at Anfield. Newcastle, on the other hand, have 4 wins, 3 draws and 2 defeats both home and away this season.
This fixture always attracts a lot of media attention and is usually televised thanks to a couple of 4-3 results back in the 90’s, the first of which often tops polls as the greatest Premier League game of all time.
Alas our last game against Liverpool was a less exciting affair and we lost 3-0 to goals from Maxi, Kuyt and Suarez at Anfield back in early May this year. We had a better time of things at home to Liverpool last season where we came out 3-1 winners back in December 2010 with goals from Nolan, Barton and Carroll for us and a Dirk Kuyt strike took a deflection off Steven Taylor for their goal.
|Played||Newcastle Wins||Liverpool Wins||Draws|
|All Premier League||34||8||20||6|
One shocking statistic is that we haven’t won at Anfield since our first Premier League game there in 1994, which we won 2-0 with goals from Rob Lee and Andy Cole.
Liverpool come into the game on the back of draws away to Wigan and at home to Blackburn, which must be seen as poor results for a side with European ambitions.
Of course we come into it having just ended a fairly dismal run. We perhaps couldn’t have been expected to take much from the Man City, Man Utd and Chelsea games – and maybe the one point we got was all we could expect – but taking only 1 point from our home games against Swansea and West Brom was poor. Things are looking up though and a late surge at Bolton saw us come away winners from what was an otherwise fairly bland game.
|Last 6 Games||Pts|
Luis Suarez won’t be available as he’s serving a one match ban, which means Andy Carroll will probably get a start against us. Steven Gerrard is getting back to match fitness and put in a substitute appearance on Boxing Day, so he could be in contention for start.
Liverpool (from): Reina, Johnson, Agger, Skrtel, Enrique, Kuyt, Adam, Henderson, Downing, Carroll, Bellamy, Doni, Kelly, Carragher, Coates, Shelvey, Gerrard, Spearing, Rodriguez.
Davide Santon, who has been suffering from a minor knee problem, may be back in contention and Dan Gosling will available after serving a 3 match ban. Danny Guthrie and Peter Lovenkrands are expected to be out for a further 2-3 weeks with groin and shin injuries respectively, and Taylor and Marveaux will be crocked for a long while yet.
Apparently Demba Ba suffered a knee-knock – or possibly a knocked knee – against Bolton but will be fine for the match at Anfield.
Newcastle (from): Krul, Elliot, Harper, Simpson, R Taylor, Santon, Ferguson, Perch, Coloccini, Williamson, Kadar, Tiote, Cabaye, Obertan, Ben Arfa, Gutierrez, Sammy Ameobi, Gosling, Abeid, Vuckic, Smith, Ba, Best, Shola Ameobi.
Personally, I suspect we’ll start with exactly the same side we used at Bolton.
What The Managers Say
Kenny Dalglish had this to say: “I think Newcastle have done very well this season. They collected a lot of points early doors, and I know it’s tailed off a wee bit now, but that’s because they probably have a harder run of fixtures than they did at the start of the season. But they are up there and have done fantastically well.“
Whilst Alan Pardew had this to say: “We are looking forward to going to Anfield, and go into the game in high spirits and full of confidence. Liverpool have invested a lot of money, and when you look at them they are a very good side. I suspect that they will probably have a stronger second half to the season than they did the first.“
Howay The Lads!