On April eighth, Stoke City host Liverpool as Jurgen Klopp’s side looks to regain their momentum and push into the Champions League.
Stoke City find themselves in mid-table mediocrity with seven matches still to play this season. They’re essentially safe from relegation, but no where near qualifying Europe next season. The mindset that the season is over may have already set in on the squad, as they have win none of their last four matches and scored only one goal in those matches. Liverpool are vulnerable away from home, but Stoke will have to pick up their performances to have any success.
Liverpool will be disappointed after a late equalizer from Josh King led to the Reds dropping more points against a bottom half side. Though they usually drop points away from home, the draw against Bournemouth followed the pattern of dropping points against teams Liverpool “should beat” that has plagued Klopp’s side all season. Manchester City’s loss to Chelsea keeps the Reds in third, but they will fall out of the top four if Arenal and City win their games in hand. While they are still favourites to finish in the top four, Liverpool can’t afford to drop too many more points in these kinds of games.
Stoke’s side could look very different, depending on the results of some key fitness tests. Jon Walters, Xherdan Shaqiri, and Ramadan Sobhi are all doubts to pass fit against Liverpool, according to Physioroom.com. On top of them, both Jack Butland and Stephen Ireland are out with long term injuries.
Liverpool are dealing with some serious fitness issues. Star man Sadio Mane, Adam Lallana, and Jordan Henderson are all expected to miss out, according to Physioroom.com, and Phillipe Coutinho is a doubt for the match after being substituted due to illness against Bournemouth.
Stoke City: Marko Arnautovic
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