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Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Liverpool vs Arsenal EPL 08-09: Preview, Live Score

(This entry was originally published on Monday, April 20th, 2009)

Aiming to retain the top spot from Manchester United, Liverpool takes on Arsenal at Anfield on Tuesday (21 April 2009) in a crucial premier league fixture. Both sides have something to attain for from the match as the premier league season approaches towards the end. The game is significant for both teams, but definitely for different reasons. Liverpool is running for their first premier league title in 19 years, while Arsenal is looking to finish the season in the top four- ensuring their Champions league qualifying spot for the next season.

Match: Liverpool vs Arsenal, English Premier League 2008-09

Date: 21 April 2009

Venue: Anfield, Liverpool

Kick off: 20:00 BST (British Standard Time)

Live on TV and Radio: Sky Sports 1 TV Channel, BBC Radio Five Live

Liverpool sits in the second place of the point table with 70 points from 32 games, just a point adrift of leader Manchester United who has a match in hand. So, you can see that Liverpool is very much active in the title race and the Reds could achieve their much-waited premier league title this season. A victory over Arsenal would see the Rafael Benitez boys topping the point table with 2 points lead over Manchester United, while a draw would also move them in the top spot on goal difference.

Arsenal must get over their recent FA Cup semi final defeat to Chelsea at Wembley Stadium before their visit to the Merseyside club on Tuesday. Arsenal may have been out of the title race in premier league, but finishing in the top four is not yet guaranteed for the Gunners. So, the Arsene Wenger boys would not like to drop all three points from the Anfield clash.

Arsenal still has 7-point lead over fifth placed Aston Villa who has been the realistic challenger for Arsenal for the 4th spot in the table. From 32 outings Arsenal has 61 points and need three more wins alongside a draw in their remaining six games to finish the league in the top four. A victory would definitely strengthen Arsenal’s hold on the fourth pace, while draw away at Liverpool should not frustrate the Gunners.

For Liverpool, winning three points in the home encounter with Arsenal is very important in their bid to win the premier league title denying Manchester United their third straight premier league title. Liverpool will return to action since their 4-4 Champions league second leg quarter final draw last week. Though the Reds were eventually knocked out of the tournament on 7-5 aggregate score, their second leg performance was full of spirit, featuring their strong mental strength and never give-up mentality.

Liverpool will be missing their spirited captain Steven Gerrard who could not yet get over his groin injury which barred him from playing in the 4-4 Champions league fixture and the 4-0 thrashing of Blackburn Rovers last week. Now, it has been reported that the midfielder still needs 7 to 10 days to recover from the injury. Missing Gerrard could be a big blow for the Reds, but you should remember that Liverpool put 8 goals in their last two games without Gerrard, and they would like to repeat the success once again during Arsenal’s visit of Anfield. Other than the recent Champions league defeat, Liverpool has been in sparking form in premier league recently, winning all of their last five outings including a 4-1 win at Manchester United. At home, Liverpool is currently unbeaten in 27 games. In their last five premier league games, Liverpool scored 16 goals and conceded only once and it shows the scoring form of the Reds.

Arsenal is currently unbeaten in 18 games in premier league, and has won all of their last five games. However, the Gunners might find it pretty hard to continue their unbeaten run as the North Londoners are suffering from a number of injury blows both in defense as well as in attack. Arsenal will be without their key defenders including Gael Clichy, William Gallas and Johan Djourou, who all missed the FA Cup semi final defeat against Chelsea. However, Bacary Sagna, who missed the FA Cup match as he was suffering from a virus, is now all set to return in action after getting over his illness. However, the defender’s condition will be assessed again before featuring him in the starting line up of Arsenal at Anfield. Goalkeeper Manuel Almunia could not yet recover from his ankle injury and will miss out for the Liverpool trip. So, Lukasz Fabianski will continue his job in Arsenal goal.

To add to the injury, Arsenal has been reported that they would miss two of their key strikers Robin van Persie and striker Emmanuel Adebayor. Robin van Persie is the leading scorer for Arsenal so far this season and he would now miss the Liverpool match with a groin problem, while Adebayor, who had returned from injury earlier this month against Manchester City, is currently carrying a hamstring injury and will remain sidelined for the visit to Liverpool. However, the good news is that striker Eduardo will be back in action with the match against Liverpool after recovering his injury.

Online Live Score and Updates

The match between Liverpool and Arsenal will be shown live on Sky Sports 1 TV channel. However, if you can not watch the match on television, you can tune on to BBC Radio Five Live for hearing the live commentary of the game. However, if you can not manage your time to watch the match live on TV or enjoy radio commentary, then you can get the live score and updates of the match from the following websites:

Live Score

Goalzz

Footie Scorez

Sportpress

Goal.com

It is very tough to pick up a favorite from a match of this stature. Liverpool will have home advantage, and given their recent scoring form, you might indicate the Reds to be the favorite of the match. However, you can not forget that Arsenal has defeated Chelsea on the road this season in premier league. So, you can not just write off Wenger boys who are full of talent and skill. Most importantly, Arsenal has the spark in its midfield in the presence of Cesc Fabregas and Andrei Arshavin, and in the absence of Gerrard, Liverpool might face some problem to match the Arsenal midfield. However, Liverpool has its advantage in defense and attack, while Wenger is going through a tough time with its injury-hit back line. Still, I think, either side can win the match, but I am doubtful about watching an entertaining match in the absence of van Persie, Adebayor and Gerrard.

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