Next five games after Tottenham thriller

Liverpool go into the final month of a season that will not only dictate how the Reds finish the current campaign, but how they start next term.

That, at least, is the message Jurgen Klopp has been spreading ahead of the club’s final slate of matches. “For what we qualify, for me, is not so interesting,” Klopp insisted as Liverpool risk missing out on the Champions League for the first time since 2016. “Whatever happens in the last few weeks will be very important for next season.”

Based on the jaw-dropping chaos that ensued during Liverpool’s bonkers 4-3 victory over Tottenham on Sunday, the Merseyside outfit are in for a thrilling 2023/24 campaign.

Here are Liverpool’s evidently decisive final five matches.

Roberto Firmino, Virgil van Dijk

Aleksandar Mitrovic (right) terrorised Liverpool on the opening weekend of the season / Mike Hewitt/GettyImages

Marco Silva won his first-ever meeting with Liverpool, leading a Hull City side which included Andy Robertson at left-back to a famous 2-0 victory in 2017. However, Silva’s most recent trip to Anfield was a 5-2 evisceration which brought his reign as Everton manager to a merciful conclusion.

Four years on, Silva is safe in his post at Fulham whatever the result against Liverpool after ensuring the Cottagers get another trip to Anfield in the Premier League next season.

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Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain

Liverpool haven’t lost at home to Brentford since 1937 / Chris Brunskill/Fantasista/GettyImages

Klopp has conceded that this season has taught him “a few lessons I didn’t want to learn”. Ahead of next Sunday’s home game, one of those teachings may have been how to defend a Brentford set piece.

Liverpool were tormented by Brentford’s aerial assault on their trip to Thomas Frank’s “little bus stop in Hounslow” at the start of the year. Next weekend’s meeting will show how much Klopp and co have learned from the reverse fixture.

Harvey Barnes, Alisson

Leicester scored all three goals in a 2-1 defeat to Liverpool at the end of December / Chris Brunskill/Fantasista/GettyImages

Dean Smith has twice beaten the Reds in his managerial career – leading Aston Villa to five-goal winning margins on both occasions.

If the first triumph over Liverpool owed to Klopp’s dramatic squad rotation, the 7-2 Premier League thrashing Smith oversaw in 2020 was against a full-strength side. Airlifted into the King Power Stadium to haul Leicester away from relegation, Smith would presumably settle for three points by any means or margin in mid-May.

Jurgen Klopp, Unai Emery

Jurgen Klopp (left) and Unai Emery have faced off against each other eight times, with the German winning each of the last six head-to-heads / Soccrates Images/GettyImages

In May 2022, Klopp went toe-to-toe with Unai Emery in the semi-final of the Champions League. 12 months on, both are in charge of clubs battling on the fringes of a mad dash to qualify for the tournament.

Emery’s remarkable turnaround at Aston Villa did not extend to the reverse fixture against Liverpool, as the Reds earned a 3-1 win in the Spaniard’s second match at Villa Park. However, across March and April, Villa didn’t concede a single goal at home in the Premier League.

Romain Perraud, James Milner

James Milner (right) captained Liverpool to a 3-1 victory over Southampton in November / Jan Kruger/GettyImages

Liverpool sign off a season that Klopp charitably described as “very average” away to a Southampton side that yearn for the heights of mediocrity.

By the final Sunday of May, the Saints may well be guaranteed of their place in next season’s Championship. Liverpool could still be in the hunt for European places – if not Champions League qualification – and will be up against the worst home side in the entire division.

Date/Kick-Off Time


03/05/23 – 20:00

Liverpool vs Fulham

06/05/23 – 17:30

Liverpool vs Brentford

15/05/23 – 20:00

Leicester vs Liverpool

20/05/23 – 15:00

Liverpool vs Aston Villa

28/05/23 – 16:30

Southampton vs Liverpool


On this edition of Talking Transfers, part of the 90min podcast network, Scott SaundersGraeme Bailey & Toby Cudworth discuss Chelsea’s likely appointment of Mauricio Pochettino, the carnage at Tottenham and Harry Kane’s next steps, David de Gea and Harry Maguire’s Man Utd futures, Lionel Messi’s impending Barcelona return & more!

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