Liverpool seek to regain title cushion against depleted Hammers


Liverpool look to regain their five point cushion at the top of the table but face a tough trip to the London Stadium to face West Ham on Monday night. 

The Hammers are known to be able to put on a daunting atmosphere under the floodlights as they seek to recover after a defeat at the hands of Wolves last time out.

Jürgen Klopp will be desperate to claim all three points with Manchester City playing Everton on Wednesday with a chance to go top should the Reds fail to win.

Their charismatic German coach will be buoyed by his teams record at the London Stadium, winning 4-1 and 4-0 on their previous two visits. 

Unfortately for the home side, they have the longest injury list in the league. Long term absentees include summer signings Jack Wilshere and Andriy Yarmolenko while key players Winston Reid, Manuel Lanzini and Aaron Cresswell are all unlikely to feature.

Marko Arnautovic returned to the starting line-up for the defeat to Wolves after his transfer saga but faces a late fitness test after picking up a foot injury at Molineux. The inclusion of the Austrian forward would be a huge boost as the former Stoke City player is the second highest goal scorer for the Hammers this term with eight goals.

Liverpool’s front three are of course the away sides main danger. Mohammed Salah has 16 goals this season to the to go along with the ten goals Sadio Mane has scored and Roberto Firmino’s nine strikes.

The Egyptian has been involved in five goals in three matches against the Hammers, scoring four times and assisting once. Should the 26-year-old score twice on Monday night the two-time African Footballer of the Year would become the fastest ever player to score 50 Premier League goals, achieving the feat in just 61 appearances.

West Ham’s bid end a two-match losing run could be helped by the absence of Virgil van Dijk, Jordan Henderson and Georginio Wijnaldum as the trio struggle for fitness ahead of the fixture.

Liverpool have four consecutive victories over West Ham and have scored four on each of those occasions. Klopp and co will be hoping to repeat that feat once again or otherwise present Manchester City with a chance to snatch the initiative and go top on Wednesday.

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