While Liverpool are riding a wave of momentum after crushing rival Everton in a midweek clash, they can't afford to let their guard down heading into a tricky road test against West Bromwich Albion. The Reds won the previous meeting, 4-1, in October.
Liverpool showed how dangerous they can be when Daniel Sturridge and Luis Suarez are clicking on all cylinders in the blowout of Everton. The dynamic tandem are finding chemistry at the perfect time, and that's worrisome for the West Brom back line.
The Baggies have struggled as of late, going winless over their past four matches, including three in Premier League play. That's dropped them dangerously close to the relegation zone and will likely lead to some tense moments down the stretch.
With all that in mind, let's check out all of the key viewing information for the match, followed by a look at the top storyline and a match prediction.
Where: The Hawthorns in West Bromwich, England
When: Sunday, Feb. 2 at 8:30 a.m. ET (1:30 p.m. GMT)
Watch: NBC Sports Network and Sky Sports 1
Live Stream: NBC Sports Live Extra
Match Forecast (via Bloomberg Sports)
Liverpool: 48.3 percent
West Brom: 27 percent
Draw: 24.7 percent
Top Storyline: Can Liverpool force their way into the title chase?
The way Liverpool played during the final half against Everton was nothing short of amazing. They completely overwhelmed a side that had only two losses in 22 league matches and received some clinical finishing from Sturridge.
If they can display that type of form during the stretch run of the campaign, the Reds can certainly emerge as serious title threats. They are currently seven points off the pace being set by Manchester City, which are due to cool off at some point.
The club's official site passed along comments from manager Brendan Rodgers, who believes the squad's strong play actually dates back to a draw with Aston Villa in the middle of January. The lessons learned then led to the thrashing of a solid Everton side:
You learn from every game, both as a player and a coach. And I think against Everton you could see in the response from the players that they are always learning. To get a 4-0 victory against a team that has only conceded 11 goals away from home shows the real quality in our performance.
With the Reds coming off such a memorable performance and West Brom struggling, the first 15 minutes will be crucial. Liverpool must avoid the emotional lull that often comes after a rivalry triumph and put together another strong first half.
Of course, that means making sure Sturridge and Suarez are able to get a lot of touches. That's an effort that begins in the middle of the pitch, usually with Steven Gerrard and Jordan Henderson. Their stability has been key.
If West Brom are going to earn at least a point and potentially three, it must begin with strong play at the back to thwart the formidable Liverpool forwards. Gareth McAuley and Jonas Olsson must shine to give them a chance.
Should Liverpool make a run toward the title it will be because they won these type of matches. Going out on the road and getting three points is normally something that's easier said than done, especially in the Premier League.
West Brom are starting to feel a sense of urgency with the relegation zone just three points in the rearview mirror. So the Reds should expect an inspired effort from the Baggies, but given their strong play against Everton, another win is the likely outcome.
Liverpool 2, West Bromwich Albion 0
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