Liverpool’s last Premier League game saw them edge out QPR late on in a 3-2 win, but truthfully the game could have gone either way. Liverpool sit in fifth place, behind West Ham who are fourth on goal difference, but will be hoping to affirm their place in the Champions League spots, starting this weekend.
Raheem Sterling is showing no signs of tiring, and continued his fine start to the season against QPR. The England playmaker is Liverpool’s top scorer with three goals and also has completed the second most dribbles in the Premier League with 26, six of which were against QPR, helping him to have a hand in all three goals, including an assist. Sterling has made 473 sprints so far this season, placing him in the top ten in the league, only beaten by Jordan Henderson (478) within the Liverpool squad.
Henderson also has three assists so far but has made a very impressive contribution defensively too, making more successful tackles than anyone in the Liverpool squad (26) according to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index. This ranks Henderson as the fifth most successful tackler amongst Premier League midfielders, and ninth most successful tackler overall.
Despite being aged 34, Henderson’s midfield partner Steven Gerrard has managed to cover 85.8km so far this season, the fourteenth most in the Premier League, averaging out at 10.7km per game. The Liverpool captain has been in a more reserved role this season next to Henderson, but the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index shows that Gerrard is still willing to work for the team.
Hull currently sit mid-table on eleven points. Last week saw Hull concede a 91st minute goal to draw 2-2 to Arsenal, and although a point at the Emirates should be seen as a good result, Steve Bruce will be disappointed his side could not hold on.
Mohamed Diame is looking to be an inspired signing by Steve Bruce, along with many of Hull’s other summer signings. The midfield enforcer scored with a delightful chipped finish against Arsenal, bringing his tally to four for the season, but he offers much more than just goals. Diame has made the fifth most tackles in the Premier league, with 30 in eight games and he has made Hull a tough side to break down in the middle of the park.
Abel Hernandez, signed from Palermo in the summer, has scored three goals in his first five games. According to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index, Hernandez has 0.77 goals per 90 minutes of Premier League football played. It is an encouraging start to life in England for Hernandez, and he will be hoping to further improve his goalscoring record against Liverpool.
At the other end of the pitch, Curtis Davies has displayed defensive solidity and has made the most clearances of anybody in the Premier League, with 95. In addition to this, Davies has made the most interceptions of anyone in the Hull side (24) and the sixth most throughout the entire division, according to the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index.
Liverpool v Hull City Possible starting lineups
Liverpool: Mignolet; Johnson, Skrtel, Lovren, Moreno; Gerrard, Henderson; Lallana, Coutinho, Sterling; Balotelli
Hull: Jakupovic; Bruce, Chester, Davies; Elmohamady, Livermore, Huddlestone, Diame, Robertson; Hernandez