Liverpool will be looking to get back to winning ways on Saturday, after some rocky form of late, when they face Brighton at the Amex Stadium.
The Reds' four-game winning streak in the Premier League was ended in their last top-flight outing as they fell to a disappointing 3-1 defeat at Brentford. And another lacklustre performance from Jurgen Klopp's men followed in the FA Cup last weekend as they drew 2-2 at home to struggling Wolves.
Attention turns back to the league for Liverpool before the replay with Wolves, though, with a trip to a Seagulls side who sit just a point further back than them in the table. There was little to separate the teams earlier this season as they played out a 3-3 draw at Anfield. However, Brighton's hat-trick hero that day, Leandro Trossard, will play no part this afternoon after being dropped from the squad.
But can the Reds go one better later today and pick up a big three points? We simulated the game to predict the score.
Brighton vs Liverpool score predicted by simulation
To complete this simulation, we used FIFA 23 and updated the squads with the latest injuries and suspensions.
We predict that the Seagulls could set up in a 4-2-3-1 formation, with their line-up as follows: Sanchez; Veltman, Dunk, Colwill, Estupinan; Caicedo, Gross; March, Mac Allister, Mitoma; Ferguson.
We predict that Liverpool could line up in a 4-3-3 formation, with their line-up as follows: Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Matip, Konate, Robertson; Fabinho, Henderson, Keita; Salah, Gakpo, Oxlade-Chamberlain.
Liverpool started brightly at the Amex, with new signing Cody Gakpo in particular looking sharp whenever he received the ball. The Dutchman was playing as more of a false nine than a poacher, and his creativity led the Reds going 1-0 up.
As Gakpo dropped deep to receive the ball, he shrugged off Moises Caicedo in midfield before surging toward goal. The forward picked out the run of Mohamed Salah inside the box, who had moved centrally, and on his left foot, the Egyptian drilled a powerful shot across goal to open the scoring in the eighth minute.
The goal kickstarted a period of dominance from the visitors and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain came close moments later when his header at the back post was tipped on to the woodwork by Robert Sanchez. But Liverpool didn't have to wait long to score again.
Andrew Roberson played a one-two with Naby Keita on the left as he hit the byline. The left-back faked a cross into the box to put himself in a dangerous position. Robertson then drilled a pass into the feet of Gakpo, who smartly let the ball roll through his legs, and Salah was on hand to fire the into the net to make it 2-0 with just 13 minutes on the clock.
The first-half performance was the fluid, attacking football that the Reds have been missing this season. But they came out a vastly different team in the second half, and a poor moment defensively saw Brighton pull a goal back.
Joel Matip's pass to Fabinho was intercepted on the halfway line, creating a counter-attack for the Seagulls. Alexis Mac Allister exposed the Reds' high line with a simple pass through to Kaoru Mitoma, and the Japanese winger fired past Alisson to halve the deficit.
Alisson was forced into making some good saves as the game went on but Liverpool managed to hold on to claim an important three points.
FIFA 23 predicted score: Brighton 1-2 Liverpool
Here are the full-time match stats:
FIFA 23 predicts that Liverpool could storm into a 2-0 lead at the Amex on Saturday, but a nervy second half could set up a tense ending. The simulation suggests that the Reds will have to be at their best to beat an impressive Brighton side.
What do you think the final score will be? Let us know in the comments.
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