Rickie Lambert
Brendan Rodgers' team have won three of their last four games in the league.Getty

Liverpool travel to Aston Villa at Villa Park on Saturday as the Reds look to close the gap on a top four spot.

Where to Watch

Kick-off is set for 3pm GMT. Highlights of the game will be available on BBC Match of the Day from 10:25pm on BBC One.

Overview

Brendan Rodgers' team have gained some steam coming into the business end of the season, having won three of their last four games in the league. The surge has taken them up to eighth and only five points adrift of a top four spot, which is currently being held by Manchester United.

They come into the game on the back of a 1-0 win over Sunderland last weekend where a powerful performance from Lazar Markovic secured three crucial points for the Reds.

Rodgers will be enthralled by the level of football displayed by Liverpool, especially with Adam Lallana and Daniel Sturridge set to make their return into the first team. This should give them some much needed impetus approaching the final 18 games left in the season.

Meanwhile, Aston Villa will have happy memories of the last time these two teams met at Anfield, with the Villans scraping a shock 1-0 win over the Reds in September. Paul Lambert's men have since taken only 12 points in the league and scored seven goals in the ensuing 17 games, which has put them in the mix for relegation.

Ciaran Clark will be serving a suspension after being sent off last weekend against Leicester City with Nathan Baker coming in as cover.

Christian Benteke
Liverpool suffered a shock defeat against Aston Villa the last time the two teams met at Anfield.Getty Images

What Managers Say

Paul Lambert: "The big thing for me is we will have a better chance of winning the game if they don't do it. I understand everyone's frustrations - no one is more frustrated than myself because this is a great club. Do I hope they reconsider? That's what you're hoping for. You're hoping the guy or girl in his seat says, 'Hang on a minute, stay and support them'. That's what the team needs, their support. We'll certainly have a better chance to win the game with them staying, than if they leave."

Brendan Rodgers: "He (Lallana) is ahead of schedule in terms of his rehabilitation and we are hoping he can join the group tomorrow to train. . If he is not available for the weekend he certainly will be by Chelsea. He was playing very well (before the injury) and had settled into the club very well. He will get better as his time progresses at the club."

Betting Odds

  • Aston Villa Win: 7/2
  • Draw: 5/2
  • Liverpool: 17/20

Team News

Aston Villa

Possible XI: Guzan; Hutton, Okore, Baker, Cissokho; Westwood, Cleverley, Delph; Agbonlahor, Benteke, Weimann

Liverpool

Possible XI: Mignolet; Can, Skrtel, Sakho; Manquillo, Henderson, Lucas, Moreno; Coutinho, Markovic, Sterling