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Mark Lawrenson predicts Liverpool vs Southampton result

Mark Lawrenson has told BBC Sport that he is expecting Liverpool to beat Southampton when the pair meet at Anfield this weekend – but made a concerning claim regarding their top four hopes.

The Reds are currently seven points off Chelsea. But they do have a game in hand after their clash with Manchester United was postponed on Sunday.

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Lawrenson has backed Jurgen Klopp’s side to beat the Saints with Ralph Hasenhuttl’s men having little to play for.

However, he stated his belief that the champions have left it too late to make a charge for the Champions League places.

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“I’m backing Liverpool to beat a Southampton team that is missing striker Danny Ings and does not have much to play for,” he told BBC Sport, as he predicted a 2-0 win.

“But, even if they do take the three points on Saturday, it is going to be real struggle for Jurgen Klopp’s side to finish fourth now.

“Firstly, Liverpool are relying on the teams above them to slip up, which I can’t really see happening, but more importantly they are not playing well enough to go on the kind of run they need to make up ground.”

TBR View: Mood has changed drastically since previous meeting

It is remarkable to recall where the two sides were when they previously met at St Mary’s in January.

Of course, the defining image came with Hasenhuttl unable to hide his emotions at the full-time whistle as Danny Ings’s goal proved to be the difference between the two.

Despite the defeat, Liverpool were still top after 17 games. Southampton meanwhile, found themselves sixth having gone to the summit earlier in the campaign.

Both have fallen quite dramatically since then with both teams enduring a terrible year with injuries.

Saints’s focus will be on ensuring that any remaining concerns about being dragged towards the bottom three are quashed as soon as possible.

They will also hope to build some momentum ahead of next season. Surprising Liverpool once again would be a fantastic way to start.

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