So the whole season comes down to this game. A win on Saturday could have seen us four points off of the leaders before we travel there next Sunday, a win there would have taken the league to the wire. But alas, the current squad doesn’t have the stones to put a run of form together when it counts. There is still the possibility of things changing around a bit at the top, if United were to somehow lose to us and Chelsea (their two first choice centre backs are currently injured), then it definitely becomes interesting. United also have to travel to Blackburn, and Chelsea have to travel to Everton. It could all change around easily, but the way the top three have been playing you can’t really see past it staying as it is, which is a shame. Two wins in eleven games in all competitions is not the sort of form a team needs when challenging for silverware.
Whatever, we need to forget about the league. Wenger and Benitez have both stacked all their eggs in a Champions League shaped basket and it culminates on Tuesday. We have to score, Liverpool would be happy with a goalless draw, it’s going to be difficult viewing. I doubt they’ll go out looking for a 0-0, that’s overly risky if we were to nick a goal late on and then they’re suddenly scrambling desperately for a goal or they go out. I actually think it will be a fairly open tie, Liverpool a tad more cautious but it won’t be like the first leg. We just need things to go our way, really. Not something that ever seems to happen when teams visit Anfield in European competition, but we’ll be hoping for a change in fortune.
Van Persie could be fit, he could not be. Well, it is van Persie, going by trends, he’ll be "a doubt" for the next couple of matches and then we’ll next see him in March 2009. If he isn’t passed fit, then we’ll go with Adebayor up top on his own with Hleb behind, and two of Eboue, Diaby and Walcott on the flanks. If he is fit, it’ll probably be the same side as the first leg. Sagna’s still out, but might be back at the weekend.
Subs: Lehmann, Hoyte, Gilberto, Song, Diaby, Walcott, Bendtner
We’ll see the same side that played at The Emirates, I’d guess.