Swansea City's Michael Laudrup reckons Liverpool are getting better all the time under predecessor Brendan Rodgers
MICHAEL Laudrup has warned Swansea City they face a Liverpool side who are getting better all the time under Brendan Rodgers this weekend.
Swansea humbled Liverpool — albeit a much-changed side — on their own patch in the Capital One Cup back in October.
And Laudrup’s men also took a Premier League point off the Reds when the sides met at the Liberty in November.
Swansea are unbeaten in their four meetings with the Anfield giants since they reached the top flight in 2011.
But Laudrup reckons Sunday’s game will provide the toughest test yet — because Liverpool are progressing under his predecessor in SA1.
“Liverpool are definitely a stronger team now than they were when we won there earlier in the season,” he said.
“They have made a couple of good signings, and with (Daniel) Sturridge as well as (Luis) Suarez up front they look a good team.
“As well as the new players, they have had more time to work with their new manager.
“You can see how he works and how they have developed.
“They had a disappointing result against West Brom (on Monday), but in their five or six games before that you could see they were getting better and better.”
Liverpool, who were also beaten 2-0 byZenit St Petersburg in the Europa League last night, enjoyed a fine run through December and much of January. But they have managed only one league victory in five and lost in the FA Cup at Oldham, so there is pressure on Rodgers’s team.
Despite controlling much of the game, Liverpool were beaten at home by a West Brom side who had been struggling for form on Monday.
“That was a bad result for us because it means the Liverpool players will be even more motivated against us,” Laudrup added. “Plus I do not think they will have forgotten our game in the cup earlier in the season.”
Laudrup is tipped to go with his strongest possible side despite the fact that the League Cup final lies ahead next week.
The big selection call comes in central defence, where Garry Monk and Kyle Bartley are battling it out to replace the injured Chico Flores.
There may also be a change in midfield, with Leon Britton (ankle) expected to be fit. He could replace one of the three widemen who started last weekend’s win over Queens Park Rangers.
Laudrup’s squad are flying into Liverpool today following their warm-weather training camp in Dubai.
“It’s been nice to have a bit of sun on our backs and the grass pitches we’ve been training on have been excellent,” Laudrup said.
“I think the players have really enjoyed it and the combination of training and relaxation has been good.
“Last Saturday they showed they were 100 per cent focused on QPR and not the cup final, and I hope this will be repeated on Sunday.
“It has to be that way, otherwise it will be a very long afternoon at Anfield.”