The Latics prepare ahead of trip to Anfield on Saturday afternoon, as they look to continue their impressive recent record against the five time European Champions.
Roberto Martinez’s men will have fond memories of their last trip to Anfield, when they left with all three points which sparked the great escape of last season, into life. Despite a number of changes at Anfield since March, the Latics will be confident of continuing Liverpool’s awful home record in 2012.
Having spoken in the week about his vision of a top ten spot, Martinez will be keen to ensure his side pick up and recover from last weekend’s defeat against West Brom. Having also turned down the opportunity to take the Anfield hot seat he will be keen to show Liverpool and their fans, what his side can really do.
Liverpool are currently on an unbeaten run of six league matches, but the frustration continues as they have only secured two wins during this run. Luis Suarez has been at the heart of pretty much everything that has been good for Brendan Rodgers’ side this season and poses the main threat.
Martinez has had good news on the injury front ahead of the short trip to Merseyside, with on loan Japanese Ryo Miyachi star likely to return to the match day squad after missing the last month’s action. The influential James McArthur will be given right up kick off to prove his fitness, as the Scottish international recovers from a dead leg.
|Franco Di Santo & Lionel Messi|
Long term absentee Antolin Alcaraz will miss out once again, with the Paraguayan international Alcaraz making steady progress during his long term rehabilitation.
The Latics look set to stick with roughly the same XI that started last week, with James McArthur possibly replacing last week’s man of the match Ben Watson. Martinez will also have newly capped Argentine international Franco Di Santo to call upon as he returned from his duty unhurt if as did Oman international keeper Ali Al Habsi.
A similar performance to the one they predicted at White Hart Lane a fortnight ago is exactly what is required on Saturday afternoon. A disciplined performance through tout the spine will frustrate Liverpool and will ensure that the crowd get on their back and will allow for the Latics to be just as expressive on the ball as they were in March.
Consistency is key if the Latics are to indeed kick on and make the push for a top half finish, a run of unbeaten games is needed if they are to avoid the usual mid winter despair.