Arsenal

How Liverpool could line up against Arsenal without three key players after major injury setback

Anfield has not exactly been a happy hunting ground for Arsenal in recent years.

While it was the site of their famous title win in 1989, the Gunners have failed to win there since 2012 and have conceded 28 goals in their last eight matches at the famous ground.

It is for this reason that the first fixture back after the international break away to Liverpool is being viewed as such a test for Mikel Arteta’s side.

Lose and they will be dismissed as having only played ‘easy’ sides across their recent 10 match unbeaten run, but win and people may just start to take their top four credentials seriously.

With this in mind Arsenal could use every advantage they can get and it seems they could have been handed not one, not two, but three potential boosts ahead of the trip to Jurgen Klopp’s team.

Last season Liverpool suffered terrible luck with injuries as talismanic centre back Virgil Van Dijk was ruled out for most of the campaign before Joe Gomez and Joel Matip went on to have problems of their own later on.

While the defence has generally been OK fitness-wise so far this time around, the curse appears to have struck again on their front line.

Roberto Firmino was ruled out before the international break with what Klopp described as a “serious hamstring injury” sustained against Atletico Madrid, but it seems he may not be the only one of their famous front three missing for Saturday’s match.

Sadio Mane was forced off during Senegal’s 1-1 draw with Togo last week with a rib injury that saw him return to Liverpool in order to conduct some X-Rays.

It should be said that Senegal coach Alou Cisse was keen to stress that the injury wasn’t as serious as first feared.

“Yes, the exit of Sadio Mane destabilised us,” he told reporters after the game.

“He is an important player for the team, we took him off as a precaution and there is nothing serious.”

If he is out though, Mane’s record of six goals in 10 Premier League appearances for Liverpool against Arsenal, means that it would be a massive boost for the Gunners and Takehiro Tomiyasu in particular.

It would force Klopp to give a rare start to either Tomiyasu’s international teammate Takumi Minamino or Belgian Divock Origi in the game.

However, before anyone gets too excited, it’s worth remembering that Mo Salah has seven goals in his last nine games against Arsenal, while Diogo Jota netted three times in the two Premier League clashes between the sides last season.