Tottenham host Liverpool in the
Liverpool — dubbed Manchester City’s main title rivals this season — go into the clash with a perfect record in the top flight, while Tottenham will be desperate to bounce back following their defeat by Watford.
Here, Sportsmail compares both sides ahead of the highly-anticipated encounter, which could help set the tone for the rest of the season…
Tottenham host Liverpool at Wembley on Saturday afternoon in the Premier League
Liverpool will be hoping to lay down a marker with victory over Mauricio Pochettino’s side
PREMIER LEAGUE HEAD-TO-HEAD
Tottenham wins – 14
Draws – 15
Liverpool wins – 23
Last season’s results:
Tottenham 4-1 vs Liverpool (Wembley)
Liverpool 2-2 Tottenham (Anfield)
FORM THIS SEASON
Tottenham had picked up maximum points from their opening three games, a run that included humiliating Manchester United 3-0 at Old Trafford.
Confidence appeared high ahead of the clash at Watford but they were immediately brought back down to earth. Spurs let a one-goal lead slip at Vicarage Road, with Troy Deeney and Craig Cathcart punishing the tired visitors.
Mauricio Pochettino (left) oversees Tottenham training on Friday ahead of the match
Jurgen Klopp’s side have maintained a 100 per cent start in the league so far, beating West Ham, Crystal Palace, Brighton and Leicester, conceding just one goal during that time.
However, Mauricio Pochettino’s outfit represent Liverpool’s toughest task so far this season. We will find out more about the Reds against Tottenham as they begin the first of a nightmare seven-game run. Following the game at Wembley, they face the likes of Paris Saint-Germain, Chelsea, Napoli and Manchester City within the next month.
There were concerns among Tottenham supporters after they failed to bring in a fresh face during the summer transfer window. They may have kept hold of their key players, including the likes of Harry Kane and Dele Alli, but the arrival of a new name always boosts morale.
Furthermore, with both the Premier League and Champions League to contend with, as well as the domestic cup competitions, Spurs may suffer fatigue as the season wears on, which could prove costly.
Harry Kane prepares to strike a ball in training on Friday ahead of leading Tottenham’s line
Liverpool’s transfer business couldn’t have been more different compared to Tottenham’s. The arrivals of Alisson, Naby Keita, Fabinho and Xherdan Shaqiri have added plenty of competition within the squad.
Alisson and Keita are set to play a crucial role all season for the Anfield outfit and there is real excitement among the Liverpool camp that this could finally be their year to land some much-needed silverware.
Naby Keita, who has started impressively in England, is one of several new faces at Liverpool
The big decision that Pochettino is going to have to make is whether to stick with a back four that suffered against Watford or revert to a back three which had worked so well in the victories over Fulham and United.
The absence of Dele Alli — who is ruled out alongside Hugo Lloris — could well persuade Pochettino to switch to a 3-4-3, with Lucas Moura and Christian Eriksen the likely foils off Harry Kane.
With Tottenham likely to play a high line and attacking wing-backs, Liverpool will hope to exploit the space using the pace of Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane, who has scored four goals in as many league games so far.
After Alisson’s blunder against Leicester, Klopp has urged his stars not to play too many passes back to the Brazilian, so the Reds may adopt a more direct approach at the national stadium.
New Liverpool goalkeeper Alisson will look to bounce back after a blunder against Leicester
HOPES FOR SEASON
Spurs know they face an uphill battle this season, with City looking formidable once again and Liverpool coming to the fore but Lucas Moura has insisted his side have what it takes to win the title, their first since 1961.
The Brazilian told The Mirror: ‘It’s still very early, but we are going for everything this year, and we want to give the fans a lot of joy. I believe we have a great squad, that we’re very competitive and have the right level to fight for the title.’
After finishing runners-up in last season’s Champions League, Liverpool are only looking up, with winning the Premier League their main priority. Their summer signings have boosted morale even further and they will be quietly confident of taking City all the way.
For both sides however, any silverware will be seen as a success this season, with the League Cup in 2012 Liverpool’s last trophy. Meanwhile, Tottenham’s last triumph came in the same competition back in 2008.
Alisson takes his place in between the sticks, while Kieran Trippier, Virgil van Dijk, Jan Vertonghen and Andy Robertson provide both pace and solidity in the back four.
Mousa Dembele, Naby Keita and Christian Eriksen offer a defensive shield in front of the back four, as well as agility and creativity to unlock opponents.
Meanwhile, a front three of Harry Kane, Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane can cause havoc up top.