Paul Merson and Mark Lawrenson agree on Liverpool vs Newcastle United verdict amid ‘blown away’ claim

The Reds play host to the Toon Army on Wednesday evening.

Paul Merson and Mark Lawrenson have both backed Liverpool to build on Saturday’s 9-0 win over Bournemouth with another victory against Newcastle United on Wednesday night.

The Reds ended a winless streak of three matches with a stunning attacking display against the Cherries, but come up against a Toon side who are yet to lose in the Premier League this season.

Eddie Howe’s men drew with Wolves in their last outing thanks to a late equaliser from Allan Saint-Maximin, and currently sit 10th in the table - two places and one point ahead of Liverpool.

The general consensus among pundits, however, appears to be that the Reds will soon leapfrog the Toon Army.

Speaking to Sportskeeda, former Arsenal midfielder Merson said: “Newcastle United have started the season well and scored a stunning last-minute winner through Allan Saint-Maximin to salvage a point against Wolves last weekend. Liverpool, on the other hand, finally clicked after a run of three winless games as they absolutely raced off the blocks to demolish Bournemouth 9-0.

“It was only a matter of time before Liverpool returned to their best and I expect them to build on it with another win. Eddie Howe is a good tactician and his teams usually don’t get blown away, so I’m going for a tight 2-0 win for Liverpool.

“Bobby Firmino was the star of the show for Liverpool against Bournemouth and I saw shades of the player who knitted that iconic front three for Liverpool two or three years ago. He enabled the likes of Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane to get into dangerous positions and score goals, so we all know what a good player he is.

“It’s been a struggle for him over the past 12 months or so, but he could be a key player for Jurgen Klopp if he carries on like this. Luis Diaz is doing well at the moment and this is a player I really like.

“That said, I want to see him produce those performances week in and week out and not be a flat track bully, as he’s someone who’ll have to take more responsibility this season due to Sadio Mane’s departure.

“With Thiago Alcantara set to return to the squad in the coming weeks and the likes of Harvey Elliott and Fabio Carvalho impressing for Liverpool against Bournemouth, I don’t think Liverpool will spend over the odds to bring a midfield player in. Don’t get me wrong, they could still sign someone, but they won’t do it just for the sake of it.”

Likewise, ex-Anfield star Lawrenson believes that his former club will take all three points on Wednesday.

Speaking to Paddy Power, he said: “It remains to be seen if their new £60m striker is ready for Newcastle’s trip to Anfield, but what we do know is that they’re very good defensively under Eddie Howe. I think we can all imagine the way they’re going to play at Liverpool, sitting in and hoping to contain their opponents.

“The gloom has lifted around Liverpool after Saturday’s result. The fact they scored nine goals is just mad when you think about it – you might say they should’ve saved a few of those for Wednesday night! I’ll still go for them to make it back-to-back wins, though Newcastle might nick a goal.

“2-1 to Liverpool is my prediction.”