Liverpool needs to cut out on their defensive errors, which has cost them some huge points this season. Their lacklustre performance at the back cost them the game against Bournemouth, and their defence did not look too confident against West Ham in their last Premier League match too. But they should be on top of their game against Middlesbrough at the Riverside stadium on Wednesday. There is no room for excuses.
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp should not be too worried with their offensive players, who have scored goals despite being without their Brazilian star Philippe Coutinho. Divock Origi, his replacement, has been in good goal-scoring form in the league, and Liverpool manager will want him to keep that form intact against Middlesbrough as well.
With Liverpool picking up just one point from their last two games, there is a serious need for the Reds to get back to their winning ways. What must have hurt Liverpool players must be the fact they lost against weaker oppositions, Bournemouth and West Ham. With these losses, Chelsea enjoy a six point lead over Liverpool, who are in third position now.
Sadio Mane believes that such run of form takes place in football, but explained that his team will look to seal three points on Wednesday.
"I'm not frustrated about Chelsea [leading], but maybe because we didn't win the games we should win. But it can happen in football, so it does not affect anyone in the team. We're going to do our best to win the next game," Sky Sports quoted Mane as saying.
"It's not easy. If you think you can win the game after thinking you can win the game, scoring and creating chances, and then not winning. Of course it's not easy, but we cannot focus on that, because we have so many games left in the season, it's long, and we try to take it game-by-game. Of course [I get frustrated] in those types of games. Not only me because we know our quality, we know we should win the game, and if we didn't win it's no problem, we have to focus on the next games."
It remains to be seen if Liverpool will make any changes from the team that played against West Ham. They might be forced to with Dejan Lovren coming off at half-time in their last match, while Emre Can still remain doubtful. Irrespective of the players, who feature against Middlesbrough, Liverpool will hope to secure three points, while the home team will hope to stun the visitors.
For Middlesbrough to even, at least, take three points, they will have to do without the services of playmaker Gaston Ramirez, but striker Alvaro Negredo could make the cut, and strengthen their attacking line.
Middlesbrough might have lost their last match against Southampton, but they will take inspiration from their performances against big teams. They drew against Manchester City and lost narrowly to Chelsea last month, and another impressive performance against inconsistent Liverpool could help them collect three points. The home team lie on 16th place in the Premier League standings.
Where to Watch Live
Middlesbrough vs Liverpool is set to begin at 1:15 am IST (7:45 pm GMT, 2:45 pm ET). Live streaming and TV information is below.
India: TV: Star Sports HD4.
UK: TV: No coverage
USA: TV: Premier League Extra Time . Live Streaming: NBC Sports Live.
Australia: TV: Optus Sport. Live Streaming: Optus Online.
Thailand, Middle East: TV: Bein Sports. Live Streaming: Bein Sports Connect.