Amid Chelsea and Liverpool will be competing for almost seem like a trifling concern, such is the fervor surrounding the transfer window. At the time of writing Caicedo favors a move to Stamford Bridge but there has been no agreement with Brighton over the transfer fee for the Ecuadorian. Liverpool thought they had hijacked that particular deal when they had a £111 million offer accepted but they might find they are the ones to miss out on a target with Chelsea now in hot pursuit of Lavia.and Romeo Lavia, the three points that
The market machinations have swung focus away from what is the biggest game of the opening weekend of the season, one that starts what should be recovery campaigns for both clubs after they finished outside the top four (and in Chelsea’s case outside the top half entirely). Here is how you can watch the match and what you need to know:
- Date: Sunday, Aug. 13 | Time: 11:30 a.m. ET
- Location: Stamford Bridge, London
- Live stream: Peacock
- Odds: Chelsea +175; Draw +260; Liverpool +138
Chelsea: For all the spending of the past 12 months, Mauricio Pochettino will take charge of a side with all sorts of holes in it for the first game of his tenure at Stamford Bridge. Without any senior midfielder recruited to replace the departed N’Golo Kante and Mateo Kovacic it may be that Conor Gallagher, a player the club wants to sell, partners Enzo Fernandez in midfield. Further forward the attack would look altogether more intimidating if Christopher Nkunku were not sidelined for the bulk of 2023 after undergoing knee surgery.
The sense of the new era at Stamford Bridge will only be heightened by the man wearing the armband, Reece James succeeding Cesar Azpilicueta as club captain. Pochettino could have opted for an experienced veteran such as Thiago Silva but the leadership of a youngster of prodigious talent perhaps serves as a better reflection of where Chelsea hope they are heading.
Liverpool: Whether they get Caicedo, Lavia or someone else entirely, all the focus will be on Liverpool’s midfield over the coming weeks. A switch in build-up play late last season means that Trent Alexander-Arnold is likely to drift into more central spots when Jurgen Klopp’s side have the ball, around him should be summer signings Alexis Mac Allister and Dominik Szoboszlai. The big question, now that Fabinho and Jordan Henderson have departed to Saudi Arabia, is who anchors the midfield. Curtis Jones might fill in at Stamford Bridge, it is hard to see him being the long-term answer.
Indeed there are other spots in what Klopp termed “Liverpool reloaded” where there are more questions to answer. Can Andrew Robertson be the sort of auxiliary center back that Nathan Ake and Ben White are? Does Szoboszlai drift wide, getting Salah closer to goal in a way he wasn’t always last season? We’re about to find out.
This might not be the thrill-a-minute clash of two of Europe’s best sides that it was a few seasons ago, indeed it might ultimately be decided by the odd goals. In such circumstances, it makes sense to favor the team with Salah in it. PICK: Chelsea 0, Liverpool 1