Match preview: Liverpool v Saints
Southampton travel to Anfield tomorrow hoping to extend their current run of unbeaten games to five, after drawing with Norwich on Wednesday night. The Saints will be disappointed with the draw and probably would have gone on to win the game, had an individual error from goalkeeper Paolo Gazzaniga not allowed the visitors a soft equaliser on the stroke of half time.
Liverpool on the other hand, who have won the same amount of games as Southampton this season (3), go in to the game looking to bounce back from their 2-1 defeat at Tottenham during the week. That loss saw an end to a run of eight games without a loss and Liverpool fans will be hoping their team can bounce back at the first time of asking.
With statistics provided by the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index, here’s a look at the stand-out players from each side:
- Luis Suarez failed to score against Spurs but caused their defence great problems throughout the game. The EA SPORTS Player Performance Index shows him to be the league’s most prolific man on the ball this season, having made 31 dribbles at a rate of one every 43.4 minutes
- Raheem Sterling is chasing Suarez’s record however, and is himself the league’s fifth most prolific dribbler. The young winger has made 19 at a rate of one every 63.9 minutes
- Jose Enrique missed a number of chances to score at White Hart Lane, but his rate of shooting has been solid this season with a 55.5% on target. This rate is actually greater than star team mate Suarez’s 51.3 percent rate from 76 attempts on goal
- Steven Gerrard’s importance to Liverpool in all areas of the pitch really cannot be understated. He’s racked up 431 successful passes in the opponent’s half, a squad-high, as well as an impressive 36 interceptions to boot
- Liverpool may have lost out in their midweek game, but had been on a run of eight games without defeat beforehand. Three of their next four games are at Anfield, and all will be against teams from the bottom half of the table.
- Morgan Schneiderlin has won many admirers for his performances this season, but his defensive play could use so more refinement to match his excellent work rate. He currently sits second on the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index for fouls with 30
- This high rate of fouls is likely due to the commitment Schneiderlin shows in his defensive work rate for Nigel Atkins’ side. The Frenchman has attempted 61 tackles so far this season, managing to winning 57%
- Jose Fonte’s reading of the game has been impressive for Southampton this season. The Portuguese defender has compiled 21 clearances and 78 interceptions according to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index
- Adam Lallana continues to underline his importance to Southampton with his consistent performance-level this season. He’s their most successful passer of the ball, notching up 312 successful passes in the opponent’s half so far this season
- Lallana is also consistently the man most likely to provide the killer final ball for Southampton, having provided 31 crosses for his teammates this season
- Nathaniel Clyne is definitely showing he has multiple strings to his bow this season, not all of them limited to his defensive duties. He’s Southampton’s third-slickest passer of a baller, having successfully completed 239 passes.