Liverpool vs Leicester preview: Jurgen Klopp hopeful on Virgil van Dijk
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Last Updated: 30/01/19 4:17pm
Jurgen Klopp is hopeful Liverpool's Virgil van Dijk will be fit to face Leicester on Wednesday (kick-off 8pm) after overcoming illness.
The influential centre-back returned to training on Monday, and trained again on Tuesday.
Liverpool manager Klopp was full of praise for Leicester ahead of the clash at Anfield on Wednesday, claiming they have a "super team" with quality all over the pitch.
"We expect a very dangerous opponent, that's how it is, because they have quality. If we can go through the team, that's a super team, to be honest with you," Klopp said.
"I can imagine that they are not happy with the situation because, if you think about it, I'm not sure which position are they in at the moment. 11th? 10th? 11 or so.
"But they have a really good team. Centre-halves, full-backs, midfielders, really interesting, really interesting and up front, they are very talented and with Jamie Vardy one of the best strikers in the league."
After Leicester's FA Cup third-round exit to Newport County, the Foxes weren't in action at the weekend with boss Claude Puel believing the break will benefit his squad in the long run.
He said: "It was a possibility to rest and to change our ideas, to come back to training with intensity, quality and focus.
"It's a good thing for these players, for the team, but we need to move on, to look forward, and now we have a fantastic challenge in these games."
Harry Maguire is fit and available for Leicester's trip to Anfield to face the Premier League leaders.
The England international had to be substituted due to a leg injury early in the second half of the defeat at Wolves on January 19. The Foxes have not played since and it has allowed Maguire the time he needed to make a full recovery.
Daniel Amartey is a long-term absentee as he continues to recover from the broken ankle he suffered in October. Claude Puel has no other injury doubts ahead of the trip to Merseyside.
With Van Dijk being assessed, Liverpool boss Klopp also has an issue at right-back with Trent Alexander-Arnold (knee) and Joe Gomez (leg) still recovering and stand-in James Milner suspended, meaning either midfieler Fabinho or youngster Rafael Camacho are likely to deputise.
- Liverpool have won their last three league games against Leicester - they last won four in a row against them between February 1987 and September 1996.
- Leicester have lost six of their last seven away Premier League games against Liverpool (D1), with their last win at Anfield coming in May 2000 (2-0).
- Liverpool haven't lost any of their last 19 home midweek games in the Premier League (Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday), winning 13 and drawing six since a 0-1 loss vs Fulham in May 2012.
- Liverpool are unbeaten in their last 32 home Premier League games (W23 D9), the longest such run in the division since Man City went 37 without defeat between December 2010 and December 2012.
- Liverpool are looking to win eight consecutive Premier League home games for the first time since March 2010. The Reds conceded as many goals in their last home league game against Crystal Palace as they had in their previous 15 at Anfield combined (3).
- Leicester have lost each of their last 11 Premier League games against sides starting the day top of the table, conceding at least twice every time (27 in total) and netting just five in return. Their last such win came on January 31st 1998 at Manchester United.
It's hard to make a case against Liverpool.
Leicester can be quite a dangerous side on their day but that's the problem, you just don't know what you are going to get from Puel's side from game to game.
One minute they can be a right handful but the next they are getting beat. So for me, it's a Liverpool win with Jurgen Klopp's side opening back up their four-point cushion at the top of the table.
PAUL PREDICTS: 3-1 (10/1 with Sky Bet)