Liverpool Expected Goals (xG)
Liverpool won their sixth Champions League trophy last season, beating Tottenham 2-0 in the final in what was a deserved victory (xG: TOT 1.18 – 1.26 LIV), with the Reds limiting Spurs to just one big chance in the game.
Jürgen Klopp’s side lost just once in the Premier League last season, racking up 97 points on their way to a second-place finish, with their underlying process exceptional.
They averaged an incredible 2.05 xGF per game, while allowing just 0.90 xGA per game, being comfortably the second-best team in the league behind only eventual champions Manchester City.
Liverpool started the new Premier League campaign with a comfortable 4-1 win over newly promoted Norwich, but were flattered by the scoreline, as their performance didn’t deserve the result (xG: LIV 2.05 – 0.88 NOR).
The Reds continue to create good chances, but Norwich were able to cause them plenty of problems, and Alisson’s injury could have a bigger impact on their defensive process than many would expect, as Adrián has some big gloves to fill.
Brazil’s number one conceded just 22 non OG goals in the Premier League last season, and there is just a 2% chance that an average keeper would have conceded fewer, so he will be missed, and could lead to Liverpool being more vulnerable than usual.
Chelsea Expected Goals (xG)
Frank Lampard’s reign as Chelsea manager got off to a bad start at the weekend, as the Blues went down 4-0 away at Manchester United.
It was a game in which Lampard elected to play younger players Tammy Abraham, Mason Mount and Andreas Christensen, and while this may work in the long run, it didn’t work on Sunday.
They showcased glimpses of quality, and were unfortunate to lose so heavily (xG: MUN 2.17 – 1.05 CHE), but they were very vulnerable defensively, struggling to deal with Manchester United’s high-press.
That in particular is worrying, as Liverpool’s high-press is much more effective than United’s, so could cause Chelsea more issues here than they faced at the weekend.
The attack-minded approach that Lampard is seemingly after has the potential to get Chelsea on the scoresheet, though they are likely to be found out yet again, and could be on the end of another hammering.
The Champions League winners Liverpool are strong favourites to win this game, and that isn’t a surprise given how strong their underlying process has been over the last few years. Chelsea have issues, mainly defensively, and are expected to be on the end of another defeat here. This should be an entertaining game, but one in which Liverpool are expected to win, though Chelsea are likely to get on the scoresheet.
Infogol Selection: Liverpool to win and BTTS – 21/10