by Ian S. Palmer
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Liverpool and Sunderland need all the points they can get for the remainder of the English Premier League season if they hope to achieve their respective goals. Liverpool is still aiming for a top-four finish and a berth in the 2016/17 European Champions League while Sunderland is just hoping to avoid relegation this season and survive another year in the top flight. This is what makes their meeting at Anfield in Liverpool so important this Saturday, February 6. Both teams are coming off of midweek losses though as Sunderland dropped a 1-0 game at home at the Stadium of Light to second-place Manchester City and Liverpool was beaten 2-0 at King Power Stadium on the road to league-leading Leicester City.
Liverpool vs Sunderland – bet365 Soccer BETTING LINE:
- bet365 currently lists Liverpool as the favorites at 2/5 with Sunderland 8/1 and a draw at 15/4
Liverpool vs Sunderland – Head to Head:
- Liverpool won 1-0 at Sunderland on December 30th in the last Premier League game of the 2015 calendar year. They also won 1-0 in Sunderland last season and the two teams played to a 0-0 draw on Merseyside. Overall, they’ve met 167 times in the past with Liverpool winning 78, losing 52 and drawing the other 37. Liverpool is undefeated in their past seven encounters with five wins and two draws. Sunderland’s last win came in March of 2012 with a 1-0 home result in league play. Sunderland has just 10 goals in their past 23 league games against the Reds and last won a league game at Anfield 1-0 back in 1983.
Sunderland enters the 25th round in 19th place in the 20-team league with just 19 points from five wins, four draws and 15 losses. They’ve scored 28 goals and allowed a league-worst 47 against. Meanwhile, Liverpool currently sits in eighth position with 34 points from nine victories, seven draws and eight defeats. They’ve scored 30 times and conceded 34. Sunderland has recorded three clean sheets so far this season and has been shut out eight times. They’ve won twice on the road with two draws and nine losses with 15 goals scored and 34 allowed. Sunderland has a pair of victories and four defeats in their last six away outings.
Liverpool has four wins, four draws and three losses at home with 14 goals scored and 15 against. They have two wins, two draws and a pair of defeats in their past six home fixtures. The Reds have posted seven clean sheets so far this campaign and have failed to score on eight occasions. They’ve also failed to record a win in their past two home outings and three games overall. The Reds enter the game 11 points behind fourth-place Arsenal while Sunderland is four points behind 17th-place Norwich City and from climbing out of the relegation zone.
Belgian striker Christian Benteke should have some confidence against Sunderland since he’s scored six times in seven meetings with them. Liverpool will likely be without Divock Origi, Joe Gomez, Jordan Rossiter, Martin Skrtel, Danny Ings and the always-injured Daniel Sturridge, but Philippe Coutinho could be back. Meanwhile, Sunderland will probably be without Yann M’Vila, Adam Matthews, Sebastian Larsson and Jermain Lens. Sunderland was busy in the recent transfer window as they acquired Lamine Kone, Jan Kirchhoff, Wahbi Khazri and Dame N’Doye while Liverpool brought in Steven Caulker on loan.