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Can Liverpool return to winning ways against Watford?

Last updated: March 15, 2018 by Leon Marshal

Game details

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Kick-off: Saturday, 17:30
Venue: London Stadium
Coverage: BT Sports One
Home Team Form: DWWWL
Away Team Form: WLWWL
Last Meeting: Watford 3 – 3 Liverpool
Competition: Premier League

Liverpool versus Watford is one of just four matches being played in the Premier League this weekend, as the EPL takes a backseat in favour of FA Cup quarter final fixtures.

Liverpool are the only top six team playing and should be fancying their chances of returning into third place, at least for the time being. Defeat in the clash with Manchester United last week was costly, as the Reds threw away the opportunity to move into second, instead falling from third into fourth. Main man Mohamed Salah was uncharacteristically quiet in that match, with Ashley Young doing a good job of keeping him subdued. Not scoring in a match is something of a rarity for Salah; the Egyptian has blanked in just nine of his twenty-nine league matches so far. Liverpool will be expected to get back on the front foot and make it difficult for the visitors. That could result in changes to the midfield, with Milner potentially dropping to the bench in favour of a more mobile midfield. Not winning here would be another big missed opportunity, but Liverpool will be confident; they are yet to lose at home in the Premier League this season.

Watford may have underestimated opponents Arsenal a little last week, due to the Gunner’s poor form of late. That proved costly, with Watford missing out on the chance to win their third match in a row and succumbing to defeat. There’s the danger of a bit of lack of application setting in at Watford. The Hornets aren’t yet mathematically safe – one more win should do it – but there’s almost no chance of them going down. Due to that, there’s little left to play for from players who started the season so well. Ex manager Silva’s spectacular fall from grace started in October, when Watford went on a run that saw them win just three times between October and February this year. The Hornets have improved since then with new manager Gracia in place, but it’s too little too late. They must be cautious that that mentality doesn’t invade in this match, or Liverpool could easily brush them aside.

Team News

Liverpool have no fresh injuries ahead of this match, with Nathaniel Clyne the only long term absentee.

Klopp could choose to rotate his middle three after Can, Oxlade-Chamberlain and Milner failed to make an impact in the last match.

Watford on the other hand have ten players out through injury.

Heurelho Gomes was not recalled to the team in the last match. In fact, the goalkeeper was not in the matchday squad.

Expected Line-Ups:

Liverpool (4-3-3): Karius, Alexander-Arnold, Lovren, van Dijk, Robertson, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Can, Milner, Salah, Firmino, Mané
Subs: Wijnaldum, Gomez, Henderson, Lallana, Mignolet, Solanke, Matip
Injured: Clyne
Not available:
Watford (4-4-2): Karnezis, Janmaat, Prödl, Mariappa, Holebas, Doucouré, Capoue, Richarlison, Femenía, Pereyra, Deeney
Subs: Britos, Sinclair, Gray, Hughes, Carrillo, Okaka, Bachmannk
Injured: Kabasele, Wague, Kaboul, Cathcart, Cleverley, Deulofeu, Chalobah
Not available:

So Far This Season

. . .
Liverpool So Far This Season Watford So Far This Season
4th League Position 10th
9 (8) Wins (away) 6 (4)
5 – 1 vs. Brighton Biggest Win 4 – 1 vs. Chelsea
6 (3) Draws (away) 4 (2)
0 – 5 vs Manchester City Biggest Defeat 0 – 6 vs Manchester City
Mohamed Salah (24) Top Goal Scorer Abdoulaye Doucouré (7)
Y36, R1 Discipline Y50, R4
4 Failures to Score 9
12 Clean Sheets 8
50% Both Teams to Score Games 50%
66% Over 2.5 Goals 56%
34% Under 2.5 Goals 44%
  • Liverpool have failed to score just four times this season, with two of those occasions coming in front of their home fans.
  • Watford’s terrible run from late October until February when Gracia took over has skewed their stats somewhat. They have won two of the last three, keeping two clean sheets in the process.
  • Liverpool’s top scorer Mohamed Salah blanked in the last game after scoring in five consecutive games prior. You wouldn’t want to bet against him returning to the scoresheet here.
  • Watford’s Troy Deeney is in scoring form of his own. The striker has three goals in his last five after only returning to the starting lineup in February.

Head to Head

Last Five Competitive Meetings Between The Sides
Date Game Result Round First Goal-scorer
12/07/2017 Watford 3 – 3 Liverpool Premier League Okaka 8′
01/05/2017 Watford 0 – 1 Liverpool Premier League Can 45′
06/11/2016 Liverpool 6 – 1 Watford Premier League Mané 27′
08/05/2016 Liverpool 2 – 0 Watford Premier League Allen 35′
20/12/2015 Watford 3 – 0 Liverpool Premier League Aké 3′

Conclusion & Betting Tips

As we mentioned above, Liverpool have all to play for here, while Watford have very little. That mentality may already have set in among players at Watford in the defeat at Arsenal last weekend.

With that – along with Liverpool’s immense home form – in mind, we fancy Liverpool to win. So do the bookies though, with a straight Liverpool win priced very, very low. We’ll be combining that with over 2.5 goals to draw some value from the match then, which you can get at Ladbrokes.