Well, isn’t this exciting? Two teams who favour high-intensity, high-entertainment football, with the two worst defences in the top five (though Liverpool’s is a weird one, in that they have conceded only seven at home, better than everyone except Manchester United, but then 22 away, worse than West Brom, Brighton, Crystal Palace, Swansea, Newcastle, Southampton, Bournemouth and Watford – or, more succinctly, fewer only than West Ham, Everton, Huddersfield and Stoke – which is the kind of home/away dichotomy that seems logically inexplicable). If ever a match guaranteed fun, it is surely this one.
Encouragingly for neutrals, while between 1969 and 1971 four successive matches between these teams at Anfield finished 0-0, since then there have been just three goalless draws between these teams in Merseyside, from 51 meetings, and never more than one per decade – and this decade has already had its bore draw, back in 2012, the game when Luis Suárez made his comeback from a nine-match suspension.
The only people who might be approaching this game with trepidation will be Spurs fans: in their last 23 league games at Anfield they have won five of a possible 69 points, with Liverpool winning 15 times. So to cheer them up, here’s Rafael van der Vaart’s lovely goal from that win, back in 2011:
Anyway, first things first. Hello! Let’s share these special moments together, shall we?