Liverpool latest: Mark Lawrenson explains importance of Arsenal clash, Divock Origi reports denied

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Mark Lawrenson has said that Liverpool cannot afford to lose to Arsenal at Anfield in the Premier League on Sunday.

The Reds will head into this weekend’s round of matches placed 11th in the league table with 21 points from 16 matches.

Meanwhile, North London outfit Arsenal are sixth in the standings with 26 points, just two points behind fourth-placed West Ham United.

“I see this being much tighter, especially because these two sides are big rivals for the top four,” the former Liverpool defender told BBC Sport. “(Manchester) United are the other team in the mix and it is three teams into two places for me.

“If Arsenal win, they move eight points clear of Liverpool, which would be a big statement, while a Reds win would reduce the gap to just two points. Basically it is a game Liverpool cannot afford to lose.”

Meanwhile, Liverpool have reportedly denied reports that they want to recall Divock Origi from his loan spell at Lille.

The Merseyside outfit signed the 19-year-old striker from Lille in the summer transfer window, but they loaned him out back to the French club for the season.

However, with the Liverpool strikers struggling for goals, there have been reports that the Reds will try to bring back Origi in the January transfer window at the cost of £4.7 million.

According to Sky Sports, Liverpool have “denied” such reports and have “confirmed the 19-year-old will be staying at Lille until the end of the season”.

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