Martin Jol takes Fulham to face Liverpool this weekend, with both clubs looking to move on from surprising defeats last weekend. Brendan Rodgers and the Reds were shocked at home by Aston Villa, who won 1-3. And the Cottagers handed QPR their first league win of the season, losing 2-1 at Loftus Road.
Where to Watch
Kick-off is set for 5.30pm GMT. Live coverage will be available on ESPN and ESPN HD. Catch highlights on Match of the Day, on BBC One and BBC One HD at 10.25pm GMT.
Liverpool had a poor start to the league season, failing to win any of their first five games. The Reds have since delivered some improved performances but continue to be inconsistent, as the defeat to Villa showed. The Anfield club were dominated by Belgian forward Christian Benteke last weekend and Rodgers will not want a repeat of those defensive errors. Prior to the loss to the Villans, Liverpool were on a three-game winning streak, with wins in the league and the final group game of the UEFA Europa League.
The Reds are 12th in the league, with 22 points from 17 games; the good news is they are only one point behind Swansea City in 10th and only five behind Arsenal in the final qualifying position for European football next year.
Liverpool's home form has been less than impressive, though, with three wins and as many defeats in nine games. Improvement is needed, particularly if they are to progress in the Europa League; the club have been drawn to play Russians Zenit St Petersburg in the Round of 32.
Fulham, meanwhile, are only two points behind their hosts, but have the fifth worst away record in the league this season. Martin Jol has won only once on the road, from nine games.
Moreover, Fulham too come into this game on the back of a defeat. They were beaten by Redknapp and QPR last week; that made it two defeats in the last three games and only one win in the last nine.
- Last Five (all competitions, most recent first): L W W W L
- Last Result: Liverpool 1 - 3 Aston Villa
- Last Five (all competitions, most recent first): L W L D L
- Last Result: Queens Park Rangers 2 - 1 Fulham
Defender Jose Enrique has recovered from a hamstring injury and should be fit to play. However, Rodgers may consider resting the Spaniard for an additional week and allowing England international (and former winger) Stewart Downing another chance at left-back.
The former Middlesbrough midfielder has been heavily linked with a move away from Anfield after a thoroughly disappointing time since his transfer. However, Rodgers' decision to field him at left-back seems to have paid some dividends, with the 28-year-old putting in decent performances from that position.
Summer signing Fabio Borini and Martin Kelly remain long-term absentees. There is also doubt over Moroccan winger Oussama Assaidi, after the former Eredivisie star injured a knee in training. The good news is on-loan Real Madrid midfielder Nuri Sahin is back in contention but is likely to start from the bench.
Probable Line-Up: Reina; Johnson, Skrtel, Agger, Downing; Gerrard, Lucas, Allen; Sterling, Enrique; Suarez
Jol will hope German right-back Sascha Riether has recovered from a hamstring injury. Midfielder Steve Sidwell is definitely ruled out, as he serves a one-match suspension for a fifth yellow card of the season.
Other injury worries for the Craven Cottage outfit include former Real Madrid star Mahamadou Diarra, who is indefinitely sidelined with a knee problem, and Welshman Simon Davies, who has a neck problem. Goalkeeper Neil Etheridge and striker Bryan Ruiz are also unavailable, with the latter not expected to return before mid-January.
Probable Line-Up: Schwarzer; Kelly, Hangeland, Hughes, Riise; Duff, Karagounis, Baird, Richardson; Berbatov, Petric