League Cup 4th Round
After overcoming West Brom in the Third Round holders Liverpool face Swansea in the next round of the Capital Cup. This is Brendan Rodgers' first encounter with his former club since making an "extremely, extremely difficult" decision to leave the Liberty Stadium and being appointed to the Liverpool hot seat in June this year.
After the draw was made the Liverpool Manager said: “Rodgers said: 'The Swansea game will be a special occasion, very much so. It is a wonderful club, a brilliant club, and I was in no rush to leave there.”
Rogers led the Swans to the heady heights in the Premiership last season. Playing under a system honed by Roberto Martinez and then Rodgers, Swansea have become a very popular team.
After the exertions of the Merseyside derby it is very likely that key personnel will be rested. Jordan Henderson looks set to start and Nuri Sahin will appreciate game time to develop match sharpness. Suso’s silky skills need to flourish furthermore and the youngster will appreciate the stage provided by a competitive cup game.
After great performances against Anzi, Ousama Assaidi and Stewart Downing will likely operate the flanks. Samed Yesil and Morgan will possibly feature whilst Jamie Carragher will step in as skipper as Steven Gerrard and Luis Suarez are rested, only to be called off the bench if necessary.
Michel Vorm, Swansea’s influential number one is out with a groin injury for up to eight weeks, so Gerhard Tremmel will step in at Anfield. Danny Graham and Nathan Dyer have seen little game time of late and could be recalled from the bench.
Michael Laudrup’s Swans are a point better off than Liverpool in the Premiership table and during the weekend they showed themselves to be no pushovers by giving Manchester City a torrid time at Eastlands during the 1-0 defeat. The brilliance of Joe Hart quelled what could have been a Swans shock result against the Champions.
Michael Laudrup’s men who will not be phased and will be out to unleash a few Halloween Ghouls.
A place in the Quarter Finals is at stake here. Bootle Jan has arranged tickets and I’ll be there with my friends to cheer on the Reds before reporting back with a brief match summary.
- Liverpool have won more League Cups than any other club - (1981, 1982, 1983, 1984, 1995, 2001, 2003 and 2012) and three-times runners-up (1978, 1987 and 2005).
- Swansea last played a cup game at Anfield in 1990. They were trounced 8-0.
- Brendan Rogers men failed to score in both of last season's Premier League encounters against Swansea
- The Swans are getting used to travelling. The Anfield game is their sixth away game in seven league cup rounds.
- Liverpool have not played a League Cup tie at home since being humbled by League Two Northampton in the third round in September 2010.
- Michael Laudrup’s team, who have scored three goals in six matches out of their last nine League Cup matches, are aiming for their first ever League Cup Quarter Finals.