It certainly was not the kind of coronation Jurgen Klopp and Liverpool thought they’d receive their last time out at Manchester City. This year’s champs were still hungover it seemed like against the second-place side, and in the end got soundly embarrassed by a 4-0 scoreline.
Though Liverpool have nothing to play for, and no future competitions coming up for this campaign, they’re still chasing down a potential points record in the Premier League, and will enter Sunday wanting to avenge their showing against Man City.
That could be bad news for their opponents, Aston Villa, who still have quite a bit at stake. Villa are currently mired in a very tight relegation battle at the moment, and desperately need to secure all the points they can get. Going on the road to Anfield to take on the title-holders will be no easy feat, though Villa can take pride in the fact that they really troubled the Reds in the reverse fixture back in November.
After Liverpool’s throttling mid-week, it will be fascinating to see which side shows up for Jurgen Klopp. With little wiggle room left if they are to set the points record, expect a motivated Liverpool side prepared to take on Aston Villa. Can Villa do enough to secure a much-needed point? It has all the makings of a good Premier League battle on Sunday. Keep reading beneath the posted odds for further team news, and a betting prediction for Liverpool vs. Aston Villa from Anfield.
Liverpool vs. Aston Villa Betting Odds:
Aston Villa (+950)
Over 3.5 (+115)
Under 3.5 (-135)
Liverpool -1.5 (-130)
Aston Villa +1.5 (+110)
*Betting odds provided by BetOnline.ag
Liverpool vs. Aston Villa Pick:
With no new injury concerns for manager Jurgen Klopp entering Sunday’s showdown, expect a similar first-team approach to take the field vs. Aston Villa. They really weren’t thrilled about their showing at Manchester City, and will be keen to get rid of that memory as quick as they can.
Their defense is expected to remain unchanged and elite. Trent Alexander-Arnold and Andy Robertson were not great against Man City, and will be keen to turn in an improved showing against Aston Villa. When that duo are at their best, they’re unstoppable for the opposition. With blazing runs down the flanks, and sweeping crosses in, they generate much of Liverpool’s attack from the back.
Mo Salah and Sadio Mane will remain the wide forwards, both looking to add upon their impressive totals this campaign. In the middle though, it seems as if Firmino could be out, and Klopp could insert Takumi Minamino between Salah and Mane. The young Japanese striker could surprise with a big opportunity.
So even with the title clinched, Liverpool won’t be forced to deviate too much from their first-choice lineup. That is not the case for Aston Villa, where manager Dean Smith has some tough fitness issues to endure in a match where they could really use some crucial points.
It is believed Smith will be without four first-team players, while Henri Lansbury and Frederic Guilbert remain big injury doubts. Look for Villa to line-up in a 4-3-3 formation, and that will likely be set-up to have a go at Liverpool, trying to generate some offense of their own. It hasn’t been easy for Villa in recent weeks, with much of their chances solely being generated on the left-wing from star player Jack Grealish. He’ll have a free role out wide, but it won’t be easy without much support and with Alexander-Arnold with him every step of the way.
Mo Salah still has a shot at retaining the Premier League’s Golden Boot, and Liverpool will be keen to avenge their embarrassing midweek defeat. Look for the Reds to take a very serious approach to Sunday’s clash, continue their push for the point record, and easily dispose of an overmatched and out-gunned Villa side. Liverpool to win to nil seems to be a very nice price on the props market, but our top selection will be Liverpool -1.5 goals. Enjoy the match!
Pick: Liverpool 3-0