Liverpool v Chelsea
Wednesday August 14, 20:00
Live on BT Sport
Alisson out but attack looks sharp
The Reds made almost the perfect start to their league season with a 4-1 win over Norwich. The main concern coming out of that game was that Alisson was injured, and he was a big part of Liverpool's defensive improvement last year.
The Brazilian goalkeeper is out for a few weeks, so it's down to new recruit, Adrian, to step up. He conceded a goal against the Canaries on Friday, but the Championship winners scored plenty of goals last season, and they didn't exactly lack ambition at Anfield.
Things looked good at the other end of the field for Jurgen Klopp's side though, as they racked up four first half goals. Divock Origi scored one and assisted another, while Mohamed Salah got his season up and running with a nice finish. Virgil van Dijk got the other and he remains a huge threat from set pieces.
I expect that Klopp will field the strongest XI possible, despite a trip to St Mary's upcoming on Saturday. Sadio Mane might potentially get the nod over Origi, but I would imagine he is more likely to come in for the Belgian against the Saints.
Frank facing an uphill battle
The Blues travelled north to Manchester full of optimism, but they won't have come away with much after losing 4-0 to United.
In truth, it wasn't a 4-0 kind of game, and who knows what would have happened if Chelsea had taken one of their early chances. Their second half capitulation will live long in the memory though, and unfortunately for Frank Lampard, it was something that his Derby team sometimes suffered from last season.
Lampard made some interesting choices for his first competitive match, and for all the talk of the side being a young one, the average age of their opponents was younger.
It will be very interesting to see who comes in and who drops out for the Blues in Istanbul, but you have to think that there will be changes in personnel. Olivier Giroud could get the nod ahead of Tammy Abraham, and the likes of Willian and N'Golo Kante might come in.
Liverpool to win big
Liverpool are the hot-favourites to win this game and I would have to agree with the odds. They aren't really back-able at 1.654/6, but they certainly wouldn't be a lay on the Betfair Exchange, and I couldn't recommend the draw at 4.216/5 or a Chelsea victory at 6.05/1.
Marcus Rashford, Anthony Martial and Paul Pogba were able to rip Chelsea apart in the second half at Old Trafford, and even new-boy, Daniel James, came off the bench to score on debut.
The Liverpool front three are a massive step-up on United's attack, so unless Cesar Azpilicueta and co. step up dramatically on their Sunday performance, this could end up being a bit of a massacre.
On the Betfair Exchange, the Correct Score Market offers a potentially interesting bet, as 'Any Other Home Win' is trading at around the 7.06/1 mark (Liverpool are classed as the home team for betting purposes).
Scorelines with up to three Liverpool goals are also listed, so 'Any Other' is a Reds win with them scoring four or more goals. It doesn't matter how many Chelsea get, as long as Liverpool win the match inside the 90 minutes.
More of the same when it comes to goals
Another short price now as Over 2.5 Goals is available to back at 1.768/11 on the Exchange. The Under is 2.35/4, but I can't get excited about that as I definitely see goals in this game.
Chelsea may have drew a blank at United, but they created a few good chances and hit the woodwork twice. Liverpool scored four in 45 minutes against Norwich, and although they didn't add to that, it was almost to be expected with the game already wrapped up.
For all of Adrian's experience, the Liverpool defensive unit can't possibly be as strong without Alisson at this point in time, and the Canaries were probably value for more than the one they scored.
Goals should definitely be on the menu in Turkey, and I'm willing to risk the extra one and back Over 3.5 at 2.8415/8. It's a selection that would have landed in both teams' season openers, and neither side will want extra time.
The last time I previewed a Liverpool game was the Community Shield and I landed a 15/2 Same Game Multi. My pick for this game is a Liverpool Win, Over 3.5 Goals and Mohamed Salah to score two or more. It comes in at 11.38 and it marries up my outright selections nicely.