- Coutinho likely out for Liverpool
- Newcastle has conceded a league-high 30 goals
- This matchup has seen 7 red cards the last 7 meetings
Liverpool travels to St. James’ Park to face off against Newcastle United, as Jurgen Klopp‘s Reds look to win a third-straight in the league (Watch live, 11 a.m. ET on NBCSN and online via Live Extra).
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Jurgen Klopp has Liverpool firing on all cylinders as his men smashed six past Southampton in the League Cup midweek. Facing a Newcastle side with the most goals conceded and the worst goal differential in the Premier League, the Reds will be mightily disappointed with anything less than three points.
Philippe Coutinho is likely to miss out on the trip to St. James’ Park, as the Brazilian has not recovered from a hamstring injury and the team not wanting to take any risks with their top player. However, Daniel Sturridge made his first start since October against Saints this week and scored twice in the first half, a good sign for all Reds’ supporters.
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For Newcastle, the Magpies have conceded eight goals their past two matches and dropped back into the relegation zone. With just 10 points through 14 matches, Steve McClaren is under immense pressure and a match against Liverpool surely won’t make things easier. McClaren has history with Jurgen Klopp, as the two met in the Bundesliga when McClaren was in charge of Wolfsburg and Klopp of Dortmund. Wolfsburg lost 3-0 at home to Klopp’s men, and McClaren was sacked nine days later.
What they’re saying
Newcastle’s Steve McClaren on building confidence: “We have to believe that the next game is always an opportunity to build a performance, get a result and (if that happens) all of a sudden you will see the confidence flooding back.”
Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp on Coutinho’s fitness: “I like optimism, but with Phil we were too optimistic. Sometimes it happens like this and there’s nothing to criticise about it. He tried everything he could, he trained near normally but he doesn’t feel comfortable, so we have to take care of this.”
Newcastle struggles defensively and is battling some injuries as well, a bad combination when facing an in-form Liverpool side. With Daniel Sturridge back and scoring goals, it could be a long another long day for the Magpies. Newcastle United 1-3 Liverpool.