For those wondering, no, Gerard Houllier has not been back to Anfield. Not in any official capacity anyway. He might have nipped back to pick up some branded fountain pens and a carton of smokes that he’d left in Rafa’s office, but this will be the first chance that Liverpool fans will have to give him a standing ovation in a bid to rub egg into the boardroom’s collective bewildered face.
Anyway, our brothers from different mothers (and, presumably, fathers) at Ladbrokes have been using scientific facts to decipher whether it’ll be Roy or Gerard smiling like happy chipmunks come the end of the match…
Liverpool may be aching for a return to the days under Gerard Houllier when the Frenchman guided them to five trophies, but Aston Villa would take Houllier leading them away from the relegation zone.
Without there core duo of Steven Gerrard and Jamie Carragher, Liverpool face an Aston Villa side who are in an awful run of form and have won just one of their last 10 Premier League games.
It seems Liverpool are set for a season of mediocrity under Roy Hodgson, and Monday night’s televised game with Aston Villa may be indicative of their season.
Liverpool will be expected to win in front of their own fans and are 8/13 to do so, but only one of the last seven meetings between these two has ended in a home win.
With Aston Villa in such awful form – this is their worst start to a season since the 2005/06 Premier League campaign – Liverpool should dominate, but with both teams still finding their feet under new managers, a draw, priced at 11/4, can be expected.
The loss of Steven Gerrard is a huge blow for Liverpool as the midfielder has scored nine goals against Villa, and the Reds will once again be reliant on Fernando Torres to find the back of the net – Torres is 4/5 to score any time.
In their last 10 visits to Anfield, Villa have only failed to score twice and may take a surprise lead at Anfield considering most of their goals this season have come in the first half.
Which leaves Liverpool at 4/1 to come from behind to win or draw looking like great value, and a 1-1 draw looks the best bet at 11/2.