Wolves v Liverpool: Live matchday blog
Liverpool restored a 16-point lead at the top of the Premier League table with a hard-fought victory over Wolverhampton Wanderers at Molineux. Jordan Henderson's early header was cancelled out by Raul Jimenez's second-half strike; however, with six minutes remaining, Roberto Firmino fired home a winner and maintain the Reds' winning run.
Sadio Mane update
Jürgen Klopp offered an update on Sadio Mane during his post-match debrief at Molineux.
The forward was forced off in the first half with an injury - and the boss says the Reds must wait to discover the extent of the problem.
He said: "We don’t know exactly [what the injury is], it’s the muscle. He felt something in the hamstring. We don’t know yet, obviously, we have to wait. We will see."
And here's how the top of the table looks...
Here's how Opta saw tonight's events...
Wolverhampton Wanderers 1-2 Liverpool
Liverpool edge a hard-fought encounter with Wolves at Molineux to move 16 points clear at the top of the Premier League table.
Jordan Henderson headed the Reds into the lead after eight minutes, but the visitors lost Sadio Mane to a knock midway through the first half.
Wolves - a threat throughout - levelled through Raul Jimenez six minutes after the break; however, with time ticking away, Roberto Firmino lashed in a winner for Jürgen Klopp's side.
Jota scoops over at the near post from Jimenez's nudge.
Four minutes of added time to be played...
Moutinho off, Gibbs-White on for Wolves.
Origi is on for Salah.
GOOAAALLLLLL!!!!!!!!!! ROBERTO FIRMINO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Liverpool re-take the lead as Henderson slides a pass into Firmino, who steps inside Coady and lashes beyond Patricio.
Firmino wriggles his way through on goal, but Patricio makes a fine sprawling save when a goal seemed certain.
Wolves take off Neto and replace him with Jota.
Fabinho comes on for Oxlade-Chamberlain.
Ah, that was a good chance for the Reds to go back in front.
Henderson wins the ball high up the pitch and finds Salah, who cuts into the box and arrows one just wide of the upright.
Big chance for Wolves, big let-off for Liverpool as Traore slides Jimenez clean through on goal.
He is thwarted, however, by a fine Alisson save.
The hosts are in the ascendancy here.
Liverpool are readying Fabinho.
Traore drills one across goal and it requires a strong hand from Alisson to keep it out.
Liverpool try a free-kick routine which results in Minamino having a shot blocked by a defender before Firmino's follow-up is saved by Patricio.
Robertson goes into the book for a trip on Traore.
Goal for Wolves - Raul Jimenez
The hosts are level as Traore lofts a cross into the danger zone from the right and Jimenez climbs to plant a header beyond Alisson from eight yards.
Salah shoots right-footed inside the box, but it doesn't have the power to beat Patricio.
Now Neto has a shot repelled by Gomez after Wolves broke from a Liverpool corner.
Salah wins the ball off Traore and drives into the box, but his powerful strike is beaten away by Patricio.
Back under way...
Wolves re-start the game at Molineux.
Here's Opta's take on the opening half here at Molineux...
Wolverhampton Wanderers 0-1 Liverpool
Jordan Henderson's header after eight minutes means the Reds hold the lead at the midway point, but an injury to Sadio Mane has given cause for concern.
Wonderful play from Salah sees him breeze into the box beyond a handful of defenders from Firmino's headed lay-off, but Doherty recovers well to block the No.11's strike.
A good opening for the Reds, that.
Two minutes to be added on at the end of the first half.
Jimenez bundles his way into a shooting position on the edge of the box, but Van Dijk thwarts his eventual effort.
Jimenez chests Traore's cross into a shooting position before dragging an effort wide of Alisson's near post.
This is Minamino's first Premier League appearance for the Reds.
And the Reds do need to make that change as Mane cannot continue. Minamino is his replacement.
A big blow for Liverpool.
This is a worry for Liverpool - Sadio Mane has a knock. It looks like he can't continue.
Oxlade-Chamberlain almost sends Mane through on goal, but the No.10's first touch sees the ball spin up in the air and against his hand.
Now Salah side-steps Patricio but has a shot blocked by Saiss in front of the line.
Another half-chance inside the Liverpool box but Jimenez can't convert.
A corner routine finds Doherty free at the back post with a header, which he plants wide. But he was flagged offside anyway.
GOAL!!!!!!!!!!!! JORDAN HENDERSON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Liverpool take an early lead as Henderson heads Alexander-Arnold's corner into the top bin at the near post.
Alexander-Arnold cracks a free-kick into the Wolves wall. It goes behind for a corner.
Moutinho's delivery from the left almost finds Doherty at the back post, but Trent scrambles the danger away.
Liverpool have dominated the ball in the opening 180 seconds, but an early indication of Traore's threat as he attempts to go by Gomez on the left.
Wolves now have a free-kick after a foul by Trent after play progressed.
We're under way...
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain starts the game.
Come on you Reds!
And now here come the teams...
Some pre-match reading...
VVD x Joey G
Liverpool haven't lost any of the 20 Premier League games when both VVD and Joe Gomez have started since the start of last season (W17 D3) - keeping 14 clean sheets and conceding just six goals.
The pre-match light show is under way and in full swing at Molineux.
Kick off is almost upon us.
Inside the away dressing room...
Did you know?
Liverpool have named the same starting XI in three consecutive Premier League games for the first time since they named an unchanged side for their first three games of the 2018-19 season.
According to Opta, the sides will line up like so...
It’s an unchanged line-up for the third successive Premier League game for Liverpool as Jürgen Klopp fields the same starting XI that began the fixtures with Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester United.
Adam Lallana misses out due to a virus.
Liverpool: Alisson, Alexander-Arnold, Gomez, Van Dijk, Robertson, Henderson, Wijnaldum, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Mane, Salah, Firmino.
Subs: Adrian, Fabinho, Minamino, Origi, Matip, Jones, Williams.
Mane on the mic at Molineux
Sadio Mane on pre-match media duties at Molineux...
'Liverpool are on a different level to everyone else'
That's the view of Robbie Keane - a man who, of course, played for both the Reds and Wolves during his distinguished career.
The former striker is interviewed in the matchday programme and when asked for his prediction for tonight's game, says: "I'll be watching. Wolves can give anyone a game, the way they play, but Liverpool are on a different level to everyone else with their front three.
"It's not going to be an easy game, that's for sure, it'll be tough. Wolves at home are very strong, with the energy they have and the system they play, but at the moment I just can't see Liverpool getting beat."
Watch the highlights from our last visit to Wolves in the Premier League in the video below...
***Liverpoolfc.com official weather update alert***
Greetings, friends. Good evening from Wolverhampton.
It's your official Liverpoolfc.com weather update.
So, we begin with the news that it's a mild night in the Midlands, with temperatures around six degrees. Our trusted sources inform us that's unlikely to change much over the course of the evening.
It's also pretty still and with no rain, conditions are good for watching football, although there is a smattering of fog lurking in the air.
Ready to go...
The view from Wolverhampton
Want to know more about our opponents this evening? Well, click here to read our chat with Wolves season ticket holder Ben Rasmin.
A good omen?
Liverpool have won each of their last eight evening kick-offs in the Premier League (7pm or later), scoring 31 goals in these games and conceding just six in return.
Last time out
The Reds continued their Premier League winning streak with a memorable victory over Manchester United on Sunday afternoon. Relive the story of that one with Inside Anfield...
Tonight's hosts have a win, a draw and a defeat since being edged out at Anfield in late December.
Having lost at Watford and been held at home by Newcastle, Nuno's side then came from two goals behind to clinch a 3-2 result at Southampton last Saturday.
Their starting XI at St Mary's was: Patricio, Coady, Saiss, Dendoncker, Doherty, Jonny, Neves, Moutinho, Neto, Traore, Jimenez.
What the managers say
Klopp: "Wolves are not only this year, but last year, really difficult to play. They play a similar system to other teams. It depends a little bit how they set up – three or five at the back. But they do it differently, Coady has a different role, they make the pitch really big and ask you for a lot of footwork. You have to run a lot. That's normal and good, it's their way to play. For us, there are solutions for that but not without working a lot. You cannot play on a 50 or 60 per cent basis against Wolves, then you have absolutely no chance. That's the challenge for that game."
Nuno: "A fantastic game for us, fantastic chance to challenge ourselves, a fantastic chance for Molineux to enjoy another great game. We need a good performance. We have to play, we're going to face a fantastic team, a fantastic manager, fantastic players. They are very good and they are doing things very, very well. All these things motivate us, so we have to focus on ourselves, how we want to do things and compete. Always insist the word is compete; when you compete, you don't give up on anything – every ball is important. We're going to play the game."
Salah v Lovren
Here's something a little different for you before tonight's match.
Mohamed Salah, Dejan Lovren and three sets of table tennis to decide the ultimate champion, to mark Lunar New Year.
- Liverpool have won eight and drawn two of the last 11 league meetings with Wolves, scoring 17 of the 20 goals in those games
- Roberto Firmino has netted five times in his last four matches away from Anfield
- Klopp's men have conceded five league goals away from home this season - the lowest tally in England's top four divisions
- The Reds are unbeaten in their last 39 Premier League games
Mane: We'll give it everything we have
We sat down with Sadio Mane ahead of the meeting with Wolves and the Liverpool No.10 detailed the desire within the squad to maintain the side's form until the end of the season.
"Until the team is successful and I'm also successful, for me I think it's necessary to sacrifice myself to give everything possible for the team, and the team will give me [that] back for sure – every single player," said the forward.
"For sure we achieved things and we want to achieve more and big things with this club. We want to win trophies – Premier League, Champions League again, which won't be easy, we all know that.
"But what you have seen in these last few years, everything is possible and we can do it and do it again. We just need to be hungry in a good way and push ourselves until the end."
Who's in charge?
Referee: Michael Oliver
Assistants: Darren Cann, Dan Robathan
Fourth official: Paul Tierney
VAR: Craig Pawson
Assistant VAR: Derek Eaton
The last meeting
It was just 25 days ago that these sides met in the league at Anfield, with Sadio Mane's goal enough for the Reds to take three points. See the highlights of that hard-fought meeting below...
It's seventh v first at Molineux tonight - take a closer look at the stats behind both sides' Premier League seasons so far...
We checked in on Liverpool's preparations for the meeting with Wolves by attending Tuesday evening's training session at Melwood. Take a look at our gallery and footage (for LFCTV GO subscribers) below...
Liverpool's defensive ranks have been bolstered by Dejan Lovren's return to training this week, following on from Fabinho and Joel Matip.
Naby Keita, James Milner and Xherdan Shaqiri are ruled out tonight, however.
Wolves hope to welcome Willy Boly and Diogo Jota back after they trained before the Reds' visit.
They are without Ruben Vinagre due to injury, though, and new signing Leonardo Campana is currently on international duty.
The manager's preview
Jürgen Klopp previewed the clash at Molineux during a press conference on Wednesday afternoon. Catch up on his thoughts in the video below...
As it stands
Liverpool's lead at the top of the Premier League was trimmed to 13 points earlier in the week as Manchester City claimed a 1-0 win at Sheffield United.
Leicester City are a further three points behind after beating West Ham United 4-1 last night.
Back to work
It's Thursday night action for Liverpool as they travel to Wolverhampton Wanderers in the Premier League aiming to restore a 16-point lead at the top of the table.
We'll be bringing you all of the build-up, action and reaction from Molineux, with team news, live updates, photos, videos and much more.