Liverpool must bounce back from Real Madrid defeat

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On Wednesday night Liverpool were defeated by Real Madrid on Matchday 3 of the Champions League group stages - they are now in a difficult situation with only three points out of a possible nine.

Liverpool will not have to face the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo and Karim Benzema this weekend but may still have to face the hangover of the disappointing Champions League tie.

Hull City visit Anfield in a game the Reds will be expected to win; however, it may not all be plain sailing with many question marks over the selection Brendan Rodgers will make come this Saturday.

Mario Balotelli dilemma

After a below par performance again against Los Blancos, it is likely that Mario Balotelli will be rested. The Italian striker has maintained his belief that he needs to play upfront with another striker rather than on his own, but with strike partner Daniel Sturridge out for another three weeks, the opportunity to play with another world class striker will be limited.

This does however give an opportunity to fellow Italian Fabio Borini who turned down a deadline day move last summer in order to stay at Liverpool and fight for his place, he has struggled to get into the 18-man Match day squad recently but will be working hard in training to ensure he gets a chance.

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Another player who will be wanting a starting role is Liverpool-born Rickie Lambert, who is yet to fulfil his lifelong dream of scoring a goal in the Premier League for his boyhood club. Lambert has been limited to substitute appearances this year will be hoping that Balotelli's lack of form will result in a start against Hull at Anfield this weekend.

What is Saturdays likely outcome?

I would expect Brendan Rodgers to maintain one striker upfront until Daniel Sturridge is fit again, which means that Rickie Lambert is most likely in for Mario Balotelli as the lone-striker, a position he played often for Southampton.

The midfield may see summer signing Emre Can come in for Joe Allen, to add a more physical aspect to the Liverpool Midfield, with Gerrard playing deep and Henderson providing the pace in the midfield.

The defence of Liverpool may stay unchanged, with many injuries and a general lack of quality in key areas, one of these weak areas includes right back, Glen Johnson is still struggling for form and Atletico Loanee is still struggling to adapt to the pace and physicality of the Barclays Premier League.

Liverpool should be too strong

Overall, I assume Liverpool will be too strong this weekend for Hull City, and could outnumber them in the central areas, but Hull will be no pushover and will know Liverpool's aerial weaknesses.

Expect the direct and long balls from Steve Bruce's men, and a quick tempo from Liverpool who will be looking to bounce back from a poor result in the Champions League.

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Premier League
Mario Balotelli
Hull City

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