It’s one of the most hotly anticipated fixtures of the opening weekend as a new-look Liverpool side take on a much-changed Southampton line-up under new management and it’s the former who are tipped to come out on top.
Ladbrokes clearly feel a home win is on the cards too, labelling Liverpool strong 4/11 favourites for the three points, with the draw at 4/1 and the away win a speculative 8/1 shot.
As we’re not too excited by the straight match odds, though, we’ve offered three alternative best bets for the live televised clash:
Liverpool’s title near-miss was built largely on their electric form at Anfield, where they forged a reputation for blowing visiting teams away in the first half of games.
In no fewer than 11 of their 19 games at home last season Brendan Rodgers’ adventurous attacking side had forged a lead by the half-hour mark.
During their last pre-season match at home against Borussia Dortmund the Reds provided a glimpse that they would be highly aggressive from the off again this season, going two up inside 15 minutes.
There may be no Luis Suarez to call upon this season but Liverpool’s other prolific marksman of last term – with 21 league goals – showed he was more than capable of flourishing without the Uruguayan.
England’s number nine scored in every one of his first five games last season in the Uruguayan’s absence, opening the scoring in his first three top-flight appearances.
Sturridge looked sharp as ever against Dortmund, as he pounced to score the opener to set Liverpool en route to an impressive 4-0 win.
One of three Saints players to have jumped ship, Lovren’s presence in the home ranks is sure to add extra spice to this fixture, with Rickie Lambert likely to be benched and Adam Lallana sidelined through injury.
It won’t be lost on either set of fans that the Croatian centre-back’s headed goal proved the difference at Anfield last season, one of two league goals he scored.
Lovren loves to attack the ball in the box as he proved when thumping home a header on his Liverpool debut just a week prior and will be looking to make his mark once more.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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