Brendan Rogers will be hoping that tonight’s fixture with the economically powerful Anzhi Makhachkala, can kick start Liverpool’s season. Comparatively, Anzhi and Liverpool are pretty far apart in terms of form. Liverpool are currently sitting in 12th in the premier league, whereas Azhi sit atop both their domestic league and their Europa group.
It’s safe to say that Guus Hiddink’s visiting side will be full of confidence, and after heaps of investment have plenty of danger men that could cause the Merseyside club some problems. Samuel Eto’o is the man to watch, whose pace and clinical finishing has been proven time and time again. The Russian side also boast some players with knowledge of the premier league in the shape of Chris Samba and Yuri Zhirkov.
The importance of this game for Liverpool can not be understated. If they win, they gain a foothold in the group after they lost last time out to Italian side Udinese. Should they lose, Azhi will be in a strong position for progression and Liverpool will be in a difficult position. If Liverpool are to succeed they will rely on Gerrard and Suarez to provide the penetration going forward.
After making an impressive start to the season, Raheem Sterling may be given the opportunity this evening as his pace and youthful determination may give Liverpool the edge out in wide areas. Pepe Reina is still injured and will miss this fixture. His experience and quality will surely be missed.
Liverpool need this game more than the Russian outfit and will be bolstered by the home advantage. Although it goes without saying, Liverpool need to score goals in this game and will need Suarez to make sure he has brought his shooting boots.
Prediction: 2-1 in favour of the home side.