Liverpool vs Arsenal: Gunners look to cause chaos at Anfield
Liverpool and Arsenal are both on the hunt for third consecutive wins in the 2021/2022 Premier League season.
The first of two meetings between Liverpool and Arsenal in the space of four days takes place in the Premier League on Monday night when the Gunners make the trip to Anfield – next is EFL Cup fourth round on Thursday night.
The two clubs know each other inside out, and Liverpool will also know that Arsenal have had more success than most against them in recent times, winning the last Premier League meeting and taking the Community Shield on penalties.
Neither game will have ranked particularly highly on Liverpool’s priority list, though, having already been champions for some time when they met at the Emirates in July.
Liverpool are unbeaten in their last 60 Premier League games at Anfield, stretching back to April 2017 – the third-longest such streak in English top-flight history and fast closing in on second place on that list, a 63-game run they managed themselves which ended in December 1980.
Jurgen Klopp’s side were unconvincing in their opening match against newly-promoted Leeds United to Merseyside in their last home game, surrendering the lead on three separate occasions before but won by 4-3. Liverpool have so far conceded three goals in a home league games for the first time since September 1982.
The Reds were far more convincing against Chelsea last time out, though, stamping their authority on their Stamford Bridge hosts even when it was 11-versus-11 and then turning the screw after the Blues were reduced to 10 men.
A Sadio Mane brace made it two wins from two, in addition to a clean sheet which would have been almost as pleasing for Klopp, as Liverpool settled any doubts over their credentials with an assured and convincing display.
Arsenal, on the other hand, have won their last nine outings across all competitions, beating four of last season’s top five – Liverpool (twice), Manchester City, Chelsea and now Leicester recently in the Carabao Cup third round.
Arsenal have shown glimpses of a much-improved side since the start of the season with a convincing 3-0 victory over Fulham and 2-1 resilient win over London rivals West Ham United.
Liverpool, on the other hand, have brewing problems to deal with. They have been without a natural defensive pairing for Virgil Van Dijk since their last match against Chelsea when Klopp played Fabinho as a defender. The team will be without goalkeeper Alisson Becker and could settle for either Adrian or Karius.
Also, newly-recruited Thiago Alcantara is a doubt for his first home game for Liverpool after Klop announced the midfielder faces a fitness test.
Arsenal, however, look to be in a good shape ahead of the ‘proper’ test of the season that awaits them at Anfield where they have not won a game in six matches.
Arteta is confident ahead of the match, saying “we are going there (Anfield) to win” despite Arsenal having an unimpressive record away during the last season.
Arteta’s side won just four and lost seven of their Premier League away games last season, whereas Liverpool dropped only two points at home throughout the campaign.
An Arsenal win over Liverpool will be a shocker, considering the quality that the Klopp’s team possesses. If Arsenal wins, it will be the first time since 2004-05 they won their first three matches during the Invincibles era.