We look ahead to Wednesday’s EFL Cup semi-final first leg with our Liverpool vs Fulham prediction and preview. Can Jürgen Klopp’s side give themselves a first-leg lead at Anfield?
Liverpool vs Fulham Stats: The Quick Hits
- The Opta supercomputer predicts Liverpool to take a first-leg lead, with the Reds winning 73.5% of its 10,000 simulations.
- No team has featured at this stage of the EFL Cup as often as Liverpool (this is their 19th semi-final) while Fulham are making their first appearance in the final four of the competition.
- Liverpool have won eight and lost just one of the last 11 meetings with Fulham.
After a dramatic seven-goal thriller when they met in the Premier League last month, Liverpool and Fulham are ready to do it all again in the semi-finals of the Carabao Cup.
Jürgen Klopp’s side ran out 4-3 winners at Anfield but had to come from 3-2 down late on to turn things around, and now find themselves top of the table as well as in the final four of the EFL Cup.
They are making their 19th appearance in the EFL Cup semi-finals, more than any other side. They’ve also reached the final (13) and won the competition (9) more times than anyone else.
This will be Fulham’s first appearance in the semi-finals of this competition. The last time a first-time semi-finalist reached the final of the EFL Cup was in 2012-13, with Bradford City and Swansea City both doing so.
Liverpool have never lost when playing the first leg of an EFL Cup semi-final at home, winning five and drawing three. They have also gone on to reach the final on six of the eight occasions their first leg has been at Anfield.
In the last round, Fulham dumped Everton out of the competition on penalties at Goodison Park. There have been four occasions of a team eliminating both Merseyside clubs in the same EFL Cup campaign – Manchester City in 1969-70 and 2015-16 (winning the trophy both times), Arsenal in 2006-07 (losing the final) and Chelsea in 2007-08 (losing the final).
Trent Alexander-Arnold fired in the winner for Liverpool against Fulham last month but will be unavailable for this one after hyper-extending his knee in the FA Cup win against Arsenal at the weekend. He will be missed by the hosts, having provided five assists in his last four EFL Cup appearances for Liverpool, averaging an assist every 54 minutes in these games.
Former Red Harry Wilson, as well as Kenny Tete and Bobby De Cordova-Reid, were on the scoresheet for Fulham in their 4-3 loss at Liverpool. The last Fulham player to score in two separate games against Liverpool in a single campaign was Collins John in 2005-06.
As for team news, Liverpool will also be without Joël Matip, Andrew Robertson, Kostas Tsimikas, Dominik Szoboszlai, Thiago Alcântara and Stefan Bajcetic through injury, while Wataru Endo and Mohamed Salah are away on international duty. Captain Virgil van Dijk will be available, though, after missing the Arsenal game through illness.
Fulham will be without Adama Traoré, who remains sidelined, but should welcome back Raúl Jiménez and João Palhinha, who were both unused substitutes for the 1-0 FA Cup third round win over Rotherham United on Friday.
Liverpool vs Fulham Head-to-Head
Liverpool have lost just one of their last 11 meetings with Fulham (W8 D2) in all competitions (all in the Premier League since 2012) and as mentioned, have already beaten them 4-3 at Anfield this season.
A Bernd Leno own goal was followed by goals from Alexis Mac Allister, Wataru Endo and Alexander-Arnold as Liverpool fought off a resilient Fulham to eventually secure three points.
The Reds have progressed from all five of their previous League Cup ties against Fulham, most recently a 3-0 quarter-final win on their way to lifting the trophy in 2000-01. These results also include a 10-0 victory in September 1986 (the joint-biggest win in the competition’s history), and a 5-0 win in October 1993 that saw a young Robbie Fowler score all five goals.
Fulham have lost their last two visits to Anfield, but did win 1-0 there in the Premier League in March 2021. Liverpool have only lost one league game at home since (2-1 vs Leeds United last season).
Liverpool come into this game having won their last three games in all competitions, including a 2-0 win at Arsenal in the third round of the FA Cup last Sunday. They drew with the Gunners just before Christmas, before beating Burnley and Newcastle United.
The Reds have beaten Leicester City, Bournemouth and West Ham to reach this stage of the EFL Cup.
Fulham had a mixed time of things over the Christmas period, losing against Burnley and Bournemouth before securing a win over Arsenal and beating Rotherham in the FA Cup.
The Cottagers have eliminated Tottenham, Norwich City, Ipswich Town and Everton to get to the final four of this competition.
Opta Power Rankings
The Opta Power Rankings are a global team ranking system that assigns an ability score to over 13,000 domestic football teams on a scale between zero and 100, where zero is the worst-ranked team in the world and 100 is the best team in the world.
Ahead of kick-off in this match, here is the Opta Power Ranking for both sides.
Liverpool vs Fulham Prediction
The Opta supercomputer is very confident that Liverpool will take a lead with them into the second leg at Craven Cottage. The first-leg hosts have been given a 73.5% chance of winning at Anfield on Wednesday.
Fulham almost took something from their league game there just over a month ago, and have been handed an 11.1% chance of avenging that with a win this time. The draw, which would also be a good result for Marco Silva’s men to take back home with them, happened in 15.4% of the supercomputer’s 10,000 simulations.