Chelsea vs. Liverpool FA Cup 5th Round Preview

Big game under the lights!

Chelsea welcome Liverpool to Stamford Bridge on Tuesday night for the 5th Round of the FA Cup. Liverpool beat Shrewsbury in the last round after Shrewsbury had managed to get to take the tie to a replay. Liverpool fielded their youth team against the minnows and managed to beat them. Liverpool have since won 2 of their games and lost 2 of their games with a 1-0 loss in Madrid against Atletico and a 3-0 loss in the Premier League against Watford which ended their unbeaten run. The wins have also been shaky as they just managed the solitary goal against Norwich and had to comeback from 1-2 down to beat West Ham 3-2 in slightly fortuitous circumstances. I always believed that Liverpool have been no where near as good as they were last season and that luck was very firmly on their side in the way that they managed to avoid teams scoring goals agains them. Recent weeks seem to have finally caught up to them. 

Chelsea beat Hull City 1-2 in the last round and have since been in dubious form ourselves as we have won 1 game, drawn 2 and lost 2. We have been far from the form that saw us reach the top four in the early stages of the season and that has been mainly in part due to our miserable injury list. Our injuries have not even been spread out but our mostly in the forward positions and so that has hampered our chance of rotating players. It also does not help that all those injured are starters as opposed to our bench players being the ones who are fit. Our last result was the 2-2 draw against Bournemouth which was a game where we failed to take our chances and allowed the Cherries back into the game. Against Liverpool we cannot allow any such margin of error as we saw how diligent Atletico and Watford were. Against Liverpool we need to stay solid at the back and make sure that we finish our chances up front if we are to reach the next round of the FA Cup. 

Chelsea Team Preview

Chelsea will be without Pulisic, Hudson-Odoi, Tammy, and Kante while Christensen has also been added to the list for this game. Loftus-Cheek will also not feature as he played 90 minutes for the U-23’s on Monday. I believe Kepa will return to goal for this game, I think we will switch back to 4 at the back for this game with Reece James starting at right back, Zouma, and Rudiger as our centre backs and Emerson as our left back. Jorginho, Kovacic and Gilmour should be our midfield 3 while Mount and Tino Anjorin should accompany Giroud further forward. I think Tino who is an exciting youngster might be given the nod to start for this game. Armando Broja has also been called into the squad and I have a feeling he might be on the bench as a back up to Giroud. It is an interesting lineup which is needed as we have to rotate. 

Liverpool Team Preview

Liverpool need to return to winning ways and so while Klopp has barely played any starters for the last few rounds of cup competitions in his own words he expects to make some changes to that. Adrian might start in goal with Trent as right back, and Milner as left back with Matip and Van Dijk as the centre backs. Fabinho, Curtis Jones, and Lallana should start as the midfield with Harvey Elliot, Origi, and Takumi Minamino as the forwards. Of course Klopp could field a stronger team given that it is Chelsea but if we were to take out any more of the youngsters it would send a bad message to people in general. The likes of Salah, Mane, Firmino etc should all be on the bench in case Liverpool feel that they need them. There is still plenty of threat in this lineup and Liverpool will know Chelsea’s propensity to make mistakes. 

Starting XI Prediction

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Atletico have done it and Watford have done it and we were not far off in our earlier encounters against Liverpool this season. The whole team will have to put in 10/10 performances and the key is to finish our chances and by the end of 90 minutes we should have sealed a place in the quarter-finals of the FA Cup. COME ON YOU BLUES!!!

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