BBC pundit Mark Lawrenson predicts Liverpool v Aston Villa

Mark Lawrenson has backed Liverpool to beat Aston Villa.

Pundit Mark Lawrenson has told BBC Sport that Liverpool will beat Aston Villa 2-0 at Anfield this weekend - before admitting that Brendan Rodgers faces a huge ten days.

The Reds are struggling right now, and after a 1-1 draw with Norwich City last weekend, Rodgers then saw his side stumble to a penalty shoot-out win over League Two side Carlisle United in midweek.

Pressure is mounting on Rodgers seemingly by the day, and he desperately needs a victory over Aston Villa at Anfield on Saturday afternoon.

Villa themselves have been struggling of late, but a 1-0 win over local rivals Birmingham City in the Capital One Cup on Tuesday should give Tim Sherwood's side a boost of confidence.

Villa are unbeaten in their last four trips to Anfield, winning twice and drawing twice in an impressive record on Merseyside - but former Reds star Lawrenson doesn't see that continuing.

Speaking to BBC Sport, Lawrenson has predicted a 2-0 victory for Liverpool this weekend, believing that Rodgers will snatch a win over Villa, in what looks set to be a pivotal spell of his Liverpool career, with his future seemingly on the line.

"Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers is under pressure because he has not won in 90 minutes for six games and has spent many millions in the transfer market," said Lawrenson. "I don't think he can afford to lose any of his next three games - on Saturday against Aston Villa, a Europa League tie with Sion and then a trip to Everton."

"Villa is massive to start with and then we have the Merseyside derby to finish that run. It is a massive 10 days for him. Absolutely massive. Will Liverpool beat Villa? Yes. They have caused Liverpool real problems at Anfield in the past few seasons but I cannot see a repeat of that on Saturday," he added.

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