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Liverpool vs Stoke – Match Preview

Defender Jon Flanagan could make his first start since May 2014 on Tuesday as Liverpool attempt to beat Stoke and reach the Capital One Cup final.

The Reds, who lead 1-0 from the first leg, could be without right-back Nathaniel Clyne (knee), while defender Dejan Lovren is not fully fit and centre-back Steven Caulker is cup tied.

Stoke will be missing captain Ryan Shawcross (back), but forwards Marko Arnautovic and Bojan Krkic could start.

Geoff Cameron (ankle) is still not fit.

Editor’s Note: Liverpool have a slender 1-0 advantage after the first leg encounter 3 weeks ago and Jurgen Klopp’s side will be aiming to secure a place in the Capital One Cup Final with a solid performance at home to Stoke this Evening.

Saturday’s offering against Norwich was anything but solid as they just edged a 9 goal thriller at Carrow Road, much has been made of their failure to Defend from set pieces as of late but at the weekend I suppose you have to give them credit for still managing to win the game after it looked like Norwich had managed to salvage a point.

An often asked question at Liverpool is where will the goals come from and on Saturday it was a real team effort with Henderson, Milner and Lallana chipping in and more importantly Roberto Firmino is starting to really hit in his groove in the Premier League, he’s now scored 4 in his last 3 matches and is looking like the de facto Number 1 Striker at Anfield currently

Tonight Liverpool play host to a Stoke side which were comfortably beaten on Saturday by league leaders Leicester, a disappointing result after playing so well against Arsenal the week before in which they should have arguably won all 3 points were it not for the heroics of Petr Cech between the sticks.

Mark Hughes was probably guilty of trying to match Liverpool’s playing style in the 1st Leg when they probably looked more dangerous once Peter Crouch came on and they were more direct. Crouch came on too late to change the game but it will be interesting to see if Hughes goes for a more direct style tonight.

Stoke looked a bit blunt without Marko Arnautovic on Saturday and will hope to welcome him back as they look to getting into their first domestic final since the 2010 F.A. Cup defeat to Manchester City, they are still in with a shout of getting into the Europa League places through League Qualification but the Capital One Cup could prove the shortest route there

I think with Liverpool having one foot in the final already it’s their tie to lose. I think Herr Klopp would have given his Defensive personnel some extra homework over the weekend and I can’t see them making the same mistakes twice in a week. A home win for me and Liverpool progressing to the Final for me.

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