Preview: Swansea v Liverpool

Liverpool will look to continue their sublime run of form when they travel to Liberty Stadium to take on Swansea in the Premier League on Saturday.

Premier League
1 October 2016
Kick-off: 19:30 HKT

Venue: Liberty Stadium

Referee: M. Oliver
Assistants: G. Beswick, A. Nunn
Fourth official: P. Tierney

Head-to-head summary:

TEAM MATCHES WIN DRAW LOSS
Swansea 16 4 4 8
Liverpool 16 8 4 4

Previous encounter:

Swansea 3-1 Liverpool 01/05/16 (Premier League)

Swansea goalscorers: A. Ayew (20′), J. Cork (33′), A. Ayew (67′)

Liverpool goalscorers: C. Benteke (65′)

Players to watch:

The lads prepare for @swansofficial! #LFC

A photo posted by Liverpool Football Club (@liverpoolfc) on

Fernando Llorente will be the key figure for under-fire Swansea boss Francesco Guidolin on Saturday. The Spanish target-man opened his account for his new club last weekend with a sublime finish on the half-volley to equalise – during their 3-1 loss to Manchester City.

Despite taking six games to score his first goal in the Premier League, the 31-year-old is still considered as one of the more technically-gifted centre-forwards in Europe.

Sadio Mane has been in sublime form in his debut season for Liverpool and has already drawn comparisons to legendary winger John Barnes amongst the Anfield faithful.

His pace, direct running and sheer willingness to always be available in advanced positions for his team-mates to pick out makes him a truly effectively attacking outlet for Jurgen Klopp.

His role on the right side of an attacking trio consisting of Adam Lallana and Roberto Firmino has left many defenders look shaky from the first minute – as their fluid movement around the attacking third wreaks havoc in the Premier League.

Team form and manager quotes:

Guidolin admits a defeat could mean the end of his tenure at the Liberty Stadium.

“It could happen. Maybe,” he said in the pre-match press conference. “But if we win on Saturday for the period of the international break you don’t speak any more about my position.

“But my position is not important, Swansea’s [league] position is important, and we must get a result.”

Klopp, meanwhile, says the Merseysiders will be fully focused when they take on 17th-placed Swansea, having lost to them in the reverse fixture last season.

“We will be prepared for this game. We know about the quality of Swansea. We lost there last year after coming back from Villarreal,” he said.

“We had to make a lot of changes at Swansea last season. In that moment it was too much for us. Now we have no excuses. We have time to recover, time to prepare and time to analyse.”

Team news:

Swansea will monitor defender Federico Fernandez, who missed the defeat by Manchester City last weekend because of a minor groin problem, while winger Nathan Dyer remains out with an ankle injury.

Dejan Lovren sat out the Reds’ win against Hull with a virus but is now fit but looks certain to return in place of Ragnar Klavan.

Divock Origi will face a late fitness test after nursing a minor foot problem this week.

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