Liverpool and Tottenham supporters up and down the country are eagerly anticipating the meeting between the two sides at Wembley this weekend, as the Premier League returns after a two-week break for internationals.
Jurgen Klopp’s Reds head into the encounter top of the division having won their opening four league games, but face arguably their toughest test yet in Mauricio Pochettino’s Spurs, who suffered a surprise 2-1 defeat to fellow high-flyers Watford in their most recent outing. And Spurs will be looking to reproduce a level of performance which saw them thump the Merseysiders 4-1 at the national stadium in this fixture last season, and replicating that on Saturday would see Pochettino’s side draw level on points with the Reds in the table.
Thus, there are many optimistic Liverpool and Spurs fans up and down the country at present, several of whom are likely to be intrigued by Sky Sports pundit Phil Thompson’s combined Tottenham/Liverpool XI, which includes some particularly interesting choices.
The likes of Jordan Henderson and Andrew Robertson make his side yet there is no place for Dele Alli in the midfield, although perhaps the most interesting omission is that of goalkeeper Alisson, who failed to usurp Hugo Lloris in the mind of the ex-Liverpool star.
And that is one call Thompson has got badly wrong as, although Lloris helped France win the World Cup during the summer, and Alisson made something of an error last time out against Leicester, the Reds goalkeeper looks to be a better all-round goalkeeper than the Spurs star.
Ultimately, 31-year-old Lloris has been an outstanding servant to Spurs since his move from Lyon back in 2012, what with the Frenchman going on to appear 257 times for the North London club, keeping 91 clean sheets and shipping only 274 goals in the process.
Yet it’s arguable that the last few seasons has seen Lloris fail to hit the heights of previous campaigns between the sticks for Pochettino’s side, with the France captain guilty of making some high-profile errors in recent times to suggest that he maybe isn’t the goalkeeper he once was.
And while Liverpool’s Alisson cannot be excused the error he made against Leicester last time out, there is little doubting that his arrival at Anfield has helped the Reds make a great start to the season at the back.
The Brazil international has earned many rave reviews for his efforts in recent times to suggest that he is one of the best goalkeepers in the world, and he has showcased his talents already since moving to Anfield in making some key saves between the sticks, at the same time showing a composed, yet sometimes too casual, approach when on the ball.
And the stats don’t lie in that Alisson has conceded on just one occasion so far this term as Klopp’s side begin to become the defensive force they need to be to win the league, and at the age of 25, he is surely only going to get better.
So while it’s arguable that the Brazilian star is on an upward curve in his career, one could arguable that Lloris has peaked and maybe isn’t at the level he once was – he may have greater Premier League experience than the 25-year-old, but Alisson has shown already that he is going to be an asset for Liverpool this season and beyond.
Thus, Thompson appears to have got the goalkeeping call in his Tottenham/Liverpool combined XI badly wrong.
Liverpool and Tottenham fans… what do you think? Let us know!