Venue – The Hawthorns, West Bromwich
Referee – Mike Dean
Date & Time – Sunday, May 16th @ 16:30
Current Odds – West Brom 11/1, Draw 11/2, Liverpool 2/9
What a win and performance from The Reds at Old Trafford! A fantastic result and one that keeps our Champions League qualification hopes alive. Time for that old cliché, though. It won’t mean anything if we don’t beat West Brom on Sunday. The aim now is to reach 69 points and pip either Chelsea or Leicester City to fourth place. All we wanted is something to focus on, something to cheer our Redmen on for in the last weeks of the season. Jürgen Klopp and his team have given us that now. They may be about to give us even more…
West Brom Form
West Brom are already relegated from the Premier League. Sam Allardyce’s team has not won any of their last four fixtures. They are unbeaten in three at The Hawthorns, however. Everton were the last side to take the three points from there with a 1-0 win in early March.
The Baggies are 19th in the league with just 26 points from 35 games. They have lost 19 this season so far, winning only 5. They did manage to take a point from Anfield in late December after a 1-1 draw.
Liverpool are unbeaten in six games in all competitions, winning 3 and drawing 3 in that time. The Reds’ last defeat was 3-1 away to Real Madrid in the first leg of their Champions League quarter-final.
Jürgen Klopp’s men won their last two games – 2-0 at home to Southampton last weekend and 4-2 at Manchester United on Thursday night.
Despite going behind early on at Old Trafford, Liverpool reacted brilliantly and took control of the game to mount a come-from-behind victory that will be remembered for years if they can go on and take a top-four spot.
West Brom Team News
Robert Snodgrass and Branislav Ivanović are out for West Brom.
I expect Sam Allardyce to try shore things up at the back with the introduction of an extra centre-half, namely Irishman Dara O’Shea.
Mbaye Diagne will lead the line for The Baggies with dangerman Matheus Pereira supplying the ammunition from the ’10’ role.
Liverpool Team News
Liverpool are without Virgil van Dijk, Joe Gomez, Joël Matip, Jordan Henderson, Ozan Kabak, Ben Davies, and Naby Keïta.
James Milner will face a late fitness test this week to see if he is available for selection.
Jürgen Klopp will go with almost the same starting eleven that fared so well at Old Trafford on Thursday night. One possible change could be the return of Sadio Mané to the starting eleven as Bobby Firmino ran himself into the ground against Manchester United and played all 90 minutes. Therefore, I think our front three at West Brom will be Mohamed Salah, Diogo Jota, and Mané.
Rhys Williams and Nat Phillips responded well after a tricky start against United. They went on to put in solid performances which should see them start at central defence again this weekend. This also allows Fabinho to continue in midfield.
Thiago Alcântara was in great form on Thursday and is really starting to influence games how we hoped he would.
Trent Alexander-Arnold could be in for a big finish to the season if his performance at United is anything to go by. What a game from the full-back playmaker.
West Brom XI (5-4-1) – Johnstone; Furlong, Ajayi, Bartley, O’Shea, Townsend; Yokuşlu, Gallagher, Maitland-Niles, Pereira; Diagne
Liverpool XI (4-3-3) – Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Phillips, Williams, Robertson; Fabinho, Wijnaldum, Thiago; Salah, Jota, Mané
WHEN THEY LAST MET
Liverpool haven’t won any of their last four meetings with West Brom.
Back in late December, the sides drew 1-1 at Anfield in the league. Sadio Mané put Liverpool in front before Semi Ajayi equalised late on for The Baggies.
WEST BROM 1 – 3 LIVERPOOL
The Reds are going to go big for this top-four finish. That win at Old Trafford confirms we are in for a rollercoaster end to the season. Liverpool can have no excuses if they don’t take all three points from already-relegated West Brom. I expect a win and at least one more goal for the red-hot Mohamed Salah.