With Chelsea, Arsenal and Manchester City all competing on Saturday, all three teams have the opportunity to create further distance between themselves and Liverpool, leaving Brendan Rodgers' team under pressure to produce a good result at home to Swansea City on Sunday in order to maintain their pursuit of not only a safeguarding of a top four ranking, but of continuing their quest for top honours in the Premier League.
'I'm predicting Chelsea, Man City and Arsenal to all win on Saturday - so that means Liverpool will have to win this one under pressure,' said former Gunner Paul Merson in his preview of the weekend for Sky Sports. 'It's hard when you are playing catch up and that will make it a big game on Sunday.'
Regardless of playing under pressure, Liverpool are in a handsome position as the match is contested at Anfield, a stadium the club have returned 11 victories in against just one draw and one defeat in the league this season.
In Daniel Sturridge, Rodgers has a player in red-hot form as the Englishman is the first player in Liverpool's long and illustrious history to bank a goal in seven successive appearances in the division. Swansea, too, have a reliable goalscorer in Wilfried Bony, yet all eight of his goals in the league thus far this campaign have been netted in Wales, with none in England.
Merson backs Liverpool to respond to the pressure and even foresees a potential rout, predicting a 4-0 win for the home team: 'Liverpool are really good at the moment and they should win comfortably. I can't understand why Swansea rested so many players in the FA Cup… do they really think they are going to knock Napoli and Juventus out of the Europa League? I just don't understand that.'
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