With Liverpool being once again at the top of the Premier League – at least for now –, it should come as no surprise that many fans consider a home team win to be a certainty in this contest. However, Watford are far from pushovers and Liverpool’s 2019 has been anything but smooth sailing throughout.
They fell to Manchester City in their first match of the year and have drawn against both West Ham and Leicester – two teams lower in the standings than Watford. Plus, their recent 5-1 mauling of Cardiff is proof that they are to be underestimated at their opponent’s peril. Liverpool have proven they can be vulnerable, and Watford have proven their strengths, so if the home side aren’t careful, there’s a chance they could see themselves on the bitter end of a shock result.
Liverpool vs Watford Prediction: Liverpool 2-0 Watford
Just because something could happen though – and we think a Watford win is more possible than a lot of commentators –, that doesn’t mean it’s the likely outcome. Liverpool can be beaten, for sure. But the very fact they currently sit atop the Premier League mountain shows you that, although they make mistakes, they don’t make them that often.
On consistency alone, we have to go with a Liverpool victory here. Considering they’ve also managed clean sheets in their last three outings, alongside their offensive prowess, we predict a 2-0 final score in Liverpool’s favour.
Our recommended tip: Liverpool win to nil
Liverpool are currently six positions and 26 points ahead of their opponents at the top of the Premier League standings. Therefore, it’s no wonder that they are the clear favourites in this contest. They enjoy a 75% win probability to Watford’s 8%, with Ladbrokes giving the home team low-risk match odds of 1/4. As we mentioned though, Liverpool are no strangers to a clean sheet and with that in mind, our recommended tip is that you bet on Liverpool winning to nil to get 21/20 odds and a higher potential ROI.
Looking at their head-to-head history, Liverpool have over four times the wins in this fixture compared to Watford and, therefore, a clear historical upperhand. There have been several games in the last few years, with a single Watford victory in 2015. And to be fair, that did end in an impressive 3-0 scoreline, saving them from total annihilation in recent meetings.
Since then though, it has been all Liverpool, with their last two matches ending 3-0 and 5-0 in favour of the Reds. There’s no point beating around the bush, history has not been kind to Watford in this regard.
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Players to watch: Virgil van Dijk & Gerard Deulofeu
Liverpool: Virgil van Dijk
Liverpool’s defence has been absolutely crucial to their title hunt, with them conceding a mere 15 goals all season, and Virgil van Dijk has been a key part in that success. He once again proved his worth against Manchester United, shrugging off public criticisms by Nemanja Vidic and putting in a stellar performance denying both Pogba and Lukaku. Against a fiery team like Watford, we’ve no doubt he will prove indispensable once again.
Watford: Gerard Deulofeu
We’ve made it clear that it is going to take something pretty special to get anything past Liverpool’s sturdy defences. However, Watford are not without options, and following Gerard Deulofeu’s sensational hat-trick against Cardiff, he has made a good case for fans to be optimistic about their attacking credentials heading into this contest. There’s no doubt that Liverpool pose a much tougher defensive challenge, and it will be interesting to see if Deulofeu can recapture some of that magic against a very different opponent.