Liverpool-Leeds United Preview
Jurgen Klopp is ready to go all out to secure a top-four finish in the Premier League following Liverpool's Champions League exit, but is expecting a physically tough time of things against Leeds United on Monday.
The Reds were held 0-0 by Real Madrid at Anfield in midweek to drop out of Europe's elite club competition 3-1 on aggregate at the quarter-final stage. With Liverpool also out of both domestic cups, focus is now solely on their seven remaining Premier League games, with a three-point gap to make up on surprise package West Ham in the final Champions League qualification spot heading into this weekend's action.
However, next opponents Leeds stunned leaders Manchester City 2-1 last weekend to make it three wins in a row, setting up what should be an entertaining contest at Elland Road.
"Monday night against Leeds is our next challenge," Klopp said following the aggregate defeat to Madrid. "The Champions League is very important for this club for different reasons. We can now concentrate on the Premier League. That is what we will do.
"Leeds are leading in all the physical stats in the league - we have to run. We have to work our socks off pretty much to get anything but we will try to prepare for it. We just read the table, we know the points. We want and we have to get Champions League football and if we want it, we need to play really good football."
Leeds pushed Liverpool all the way on the opening weekend of the season before falling 4-3 at Anfield. The Whites have impressed in their first campaign back in the top flight and occupy a place in the top half, just seven points behind sixth-placed opponents Liverpool.
"The first game against Liverpool was full of goals and emotion," manager Marcelo Bielsa said. Despite the defeat it left some good feelings. It was at the start but throughout the development of the league it forces you to renovate.
"The way we play in the remaining seven games, the points we obtain, will give the campaign more shine or less shine."
Leeds - Stuart Dallas
The Northern Ireland international scored from Leeds' only two shots in their win at the Etihad Stadium, both goals coming from outside the penalty area. Indeed, no Premier League side has scored more goals from outside the box this season than United's 12, which Liverpool will have to be wary of on Monday.
Liverpool - Mohamed Salah
Salah has scored in back-to-back league games for Liverpool to reach the 19-goal mark for the campaign in the competition. Should the Egyptian forward score here, he will become the first Reds player to score 20 or more in three separate campaigns in their Premier League history.
- Leeds have won just one of their last 11 home games against Liverpool in all competitions (D3 L7), that being a 4-3 victory in November 2000 with Mark Viduka scoring all four for the Whites.
- Liverpool won the reverse fixture 4-3 on the opening day - they have done the double over Leeds four times in the Premier League, with no side doing so more against them (1996-97, 1997-98, 1999-00 and 2002-03).
- The Yorkshire side have conceded 52 goals in their 25 Premier League games against Liverpool - more than they have versus any other team in the competition.
- Following their 2-1 win at Man City last time out, Leeds could become just the second side in Premier League history to beat the league leaders and the reigning champions (in either order) in consecutive matches, after Everton in February 2010 (v Chelsea and Manchester United).
- Liverpool have won five of their last six away league games (L1), which is more than they had in their previous 15 on the road (W4 D6 L5). The Reds have also won each of their last four Premier League games in Yorkshire.
Updated April 16, 2021