Yes, we know they’re in the Capital One Cup final. But no one cares about that, and they’re against Man City. So by default, Liverpool should put all their eggs in the FA Cup’s rather open basket, starting on Tuesday in the replay against West Ham.
They haven’t won the cup since this fixture nearly 10 years ago in the Millennium Stadium. Back then, Steven Gerrard was still good, James Blunt was telling us we were all beautiful and the word selfie didn’t exist.
It’s what fans of the Reds refer to as the glory days. They tailed off a little bit from 06-11, before charging for the league, losing their best player and hiring the definition of a hipster. It’s all about the ‘future’ according to Klopp. It’s certainly not about the present, as Liverpool are ninth.
But it hasn’t exactly been plain sailing for the Hammers since then either. Relegation, five different managers, but a bit of stability has come into the Irons play in the last couple of years. Sam Allardyce got them back up and in to the Europa League, and Slaven Bilic has taken over the reigns. In their last season in the Boleyn Ground, they started well, but have faded since Christmas and are sixth.
An away tie against Blackburn Rovers awaits the victors, but with both chasing European spots, the team selection of Klopp and Bilic will be interesting. The stats favour the German.
- Liverpool have scored 16 goals away from home this season so far.
- They’s lost four FA cup replays since the turn of the century (against Reading, Everton, Portsmouth and Crystal Palace)
- The sides have met seven times in the FA Cup and Liverpool are unbeaten.
- West Ham have won three of the last four league meetings, including the last two in London.
Klopp knows how to counter act a wet and windy Tuesday away game, but they’ve lost their last two midweek matches. Apart from a crazy 5-4 against Norwich, they’ve not really been scoring, and their defence is strong enough.
At, a 0-0 draw looks like value. We make West Ham the favourites to qualify at, with Liverpool. If you believe I’m an idiot and in the ‘Liverpool way” then a Reds win and both teams to score is.