Liverpool Vs Wolves Premier League Football Match 2023
Aiming to pick up where they left off before the international break, Liverpool take on Wolverhampton Wanderers in Saturday’s early Premier League kickoff. Jurgen Klopp’s men swatted aside Aston Villa 3-0 in gameweek four, while their hosts were on the receiving end of a 3-2 beating at the hands of Crystal Palace. Those tuning in to watch Crystal Palace battle Wolves two Sundays ago could have been forgiven for turning off the TV at half time, as Gary O’Neil’s men kept the Eagles at bay without threatening too much themselves, but both sets of attackers dazzled during a frenetic second half.
No fewer than five goals flew into the back of the net over the course of 45 minutes, but unfortunately for Wolves, two of them went to Odsonne Edouard either side of an Eberechi Eze effort, which rendered Hwang Hee-chan and Matheus Cunha’s headers meaningless. A smash-and-grab win over Everton and 5-0 EFL Cup thrashing of Blackpool represented a morale-boosting end to August for O’Neil’s side, but the harsh reality check inflicted upon them at Selhurst Park leaves them languishing in 15th place in the embryonic table, having already been bested on three occasions this term.
Teething problems were to be expected as Wolves adapt to life after Julen Lopetegui – even if his departure seemed inevitable for some time – and the hosts gave Manchester United an extremely good run for their money in gameweek one, but points take precedence over performances in the basement battle. So far at Molineux, Wolves have only suffered a 4-1 thumping at the hands of Brighton & Hove Albion this term, but they had previously strung together a five-game unbeaten streak on their own turf, conceding just one goal in that sequence.
Such defensive resilience quickly paled into insignificance when Brighton came to town, though, and a similar story could very well materialise against a goal-happy Liverpool, whom the international break could have hardly come at a worse time for. Facing a goal-happy Aston Villa side without either of their first-choice centre-backs could have spelled disaster for Liverpool two weekends ago, but Jurgen Klopp’s crop reverted to type in front of the Anfield faithful with a statement win, putting three past the Lions without reply. Unai Emery had been subjected to Anfield humblings during his short-lived stint in charge of Arsenal, and this time was no different, as Dominik Szoboszlai’s crisp strike, Matty Cash’s own goal and Mohamed Salah’s close-range finish saw the Reds ease to victory.
For Salah, his customary goal came amid Al-Ittihad’s unrelenting efforts to prise him away from Merseyside, but the Egyptian wing king remains as committed as ever to Liverpool, who have taken 10 points from 12 on offer to sit third in the table after four games. Aside from Manchester City and their unblemished record, only Tottenham Hotspur have also performed better than the Reds owing to their marginally superior goal difference, and Klopp’s team have now gone 15 games unbeaten in the top flight – scoring in 14 of them. Attention will soon turn to a Europa League opener with LASK Linz for Liverpool, but the visitors must firstly avenge last season’s dismal 3-0 loss to Wolves at Molineux in February, which they semi-rectified with a 2-0 Anfield success only a few weeks later.
The Wolves medical team are only looking after one player in the form of Joe Hodge, who sustained a thigh injury towards the end of August, and there is still no indication as to when the 21-year-old might be back in action. The early kickoff may still prove problematic for both managers, though, as South Korea’s Hwang and Brazil’s Cunha – the goalscorers at Selhurst Park – both have particularly tiring journeys back to the West Midlands, and it remains to be seen if O’Neil risks either man from the off.
Hwang was only on the bench against Palace before making his presence felt, though, while Sasa Kalajdzic is an option to deputise for Cunha should the South American need more time to recover from his international exertions. Similarly, Klopp – who has made no bones about his feelings towards 12:30 kickoffs – must conduct once-overs on the returning Alisson Becker, Alexis Mac Allister and Luis Diaz, while Uruguay boss Marcelo Bielsa revealed that Darwin Nunez had been carrying a muscular problem during the break. The revitalised attacker had followed up his game-winning brace against Newcastle United with a pair of assists against Villa, but Klopp is confident that he will be ready for the weekend, although the same cannot be said for Thiago Alcantara following his hip setback.
Captain Virgil van Dijk has been banned for an extra game after admitting to a charge of improper conduct against Newcastle, and his deputy Trent Alexander-Arnold will miss out too, having sustained a thigh issue two weekends ago.