No Cup games and this weekend's scheduled opponents are in FA Cup action, so it means Liverpool have the weekend off.
For many Liverpool fans – when the final whistle went at St Mary’s on Saturday, thoughts turned to their next fixture. Unfortunately for them, it was going to be in another 15 days.
They wanted the next game to come up as quickly as possible having just climbed into second in the Premier League table - and momentum was firmly with them.
But with the international break taking place – and a vast amount of their players involved for their countries, it’s a chance for Liverpool to still be fresh going into the trip to Old Trafford – which came about due to Sunderland’s participation in the quarter-finals of the FA Cup. International breaks can be a momentum killer in themselves.
There’s a lot of time for preparation, to analyse how Manchester United get on this weekend when they travel to West Bromwich Albion. Title rivals Arsenal and Manchester City also have the FA Cup to contend with.
The big downside is the chance for Chelsea to put even more pressure on them in the quest to be crowned champions when they host Tottenham Hotspur at Stamford Bridge – who are chasing a place in top four.
Brendan Rodgers will have all of his danger men back at the club unscathed, which is enough time to recover and prepare the game plan effectively for next weekend.
There is also the record that Liverpool have after international breaks, another reason why this weekend off could be useful. Though all of the games have been away from home, Liverpool haven’t covered themselves in glory defensively – then again they haven’t done much at all this season.
They were slow starters against both Swansea City and Newcastle United when they conceded the first goal on both occasions – whilst the Merseyside derby defensive performance was hardly out of the top draw – something which can be addressed in the build up to what is a huge game for the Reds.
This means if Liverpool are to fail in their objective in getting a win at Old Trafford for the first time in five years, then they can hardly blame a lack of freshness.
image: © nathan17