Reds will rise against big rivals, says Hyypia
LONDON: Sami Hyypia believes Liverpool have the perfect fixture to strike back in and return to form when they host top-four rivals Arsenal at Anfield today.
Liverpool have been left reeling from a 3-1 defeat by Leicester on Monday that resulted in manager Jurgen Klopp warning his players that some of them are fighting for their futures at the club.
But Liverpool have a strong record against their top-six rivals and began their season with a 4-3 win at Arsenal in August.
Former Reds defender Hyypia thinks the Gunners are the right opponents for Liverpool to hit back against.
“The so-called ‘smaller’ teams play a different way as an opponent to the ‘bigger’ teams,” Hyypia said to Liverpool’s website.
“The bigger teams trust their skill and their quality to go forward and they are not sitting back always, trying to hit on the counter, and I think when a team are defending with nine men around their own box it’s very difficult to break (down).
“Then, when you are not on top of your game, you can have a frustrating game. You have to put your chances away and then the other team has to open up.
“If you don’t do it then a counter-attack or a set-piece or something can happen and you concede a goal, then you are trailing 1-0 which makes it even more difficult.
“But the likes of Arsenal, Chelsea, (Manchester) United, they play their own game against all teams — it doesn’t matter if it’s a big team or a little bit of a smaller team against them. I think that helps us to play better against the bigger teams.”